This is only a problem in hard cheeses, and it's so minor that it isn't really a problem; more an irritation!
First, remember that when making cheese at home, you're making cheeses around 1 kilogram, not 100 kilograms. So a homemade cheese is going to dry out and crumble a little more than one made in a factory.
Some of the most delicious artisan cheeses are crumbly. But of course if you're trying to cut a slice of cheese for a sandwich, it's nice if that cheese stays together.
Causes for hard/dry/crumbly cheese may be:
- You have used a bit too much rennet
- The curd cooking time was too long
- The curd cooking temperature was too high
Drying out can be reduced by:
- Adding a few more layers of wax during the ageing process to trap the moisture
- Check your ageing cheeses regularly, if they start to feel like big hard bricks, add some coconut oil or wax to the outside of them.
- Make sure your ageing environment stays humid. Keeping a glass of water in the refrigerator can help if you're using a cheese fridge. Some cheese makers hose down the inside of their caves at least once a day to create moist, flavourful, and delicious cheddar.