Cheese Tips - Keeping and Storing Cheese
Cheese , keeping it fresh
Cheese is great to have around for any occasion, and helps to make a good meal even better very often. Often, as the key ingredient, cheese can be the "hero" of a meal. Since you can spend a fair amount on cheese, here are some ways to keep your cost and waste down.
Cheese storage tips
If you are getting out your cheese several times from the refrigerator before its gone, you may be purchasing too much cheese at one time. Its best to only buy as much as you will eat in 2 - 3 meal times, to avoid having to store it too long.
1.Store your cheese in the warmer parts of your refrigerator, like the top drawers or shelf.
2.This may go without saying, but always re-wrap your cheese after it has been opened. Using a fresh wrapping is not a bad idea, but I like to see what the cheese is, and don't want to throw that part away.
3.Some cheese purists, only like to use wrappings like foil, butcher paper, and parchment paper, etc, so the cheese can "breathe". Generally speaking, its fine to put your cheese in plastic wrap.
4. It used to be that some thought that your cheese would take on a plastic taste , but a good plastic wrap will make it less likely.
5.Change the wrapping of the plastic around your cheese, every few days can help your cheese to "breathe", and keep it from becoming discolored or even slimy.
**Different cheeses have different storage needs, follow these simple guidelines to keep your cheese freshest as long as possible.
The harder cheeses, like Parmesan and Dry Jack cheese, should be wrapped in plastic wrap to avoid any moisture loss. You don't want it to get rock hard.
For the partially hard cheeses, like Cheddar, Jack and Swiss, you can wrap in plastic or parchment paper, or waxed paper.
Cheeses that are partially soft like Brie and Gorgonzola should be wrapped in a parchment or similar type paper (like waxed paper), or in a plastic container.
For the more strong and pungent cheeses, like Limberger or Blue Cheese, you will want to double wrap them when storing them. This helps to keep the smell from permeating the other foods that may adopt the smell. To be extra careful, just put them in an airtight container of some kind, so their aroma will not spread.
I hate it when a cheese gets some mold on it in the refrigerator, and I always throw it away because I am so grossed out by the idea of eating mold accidentally, etc. It has been suggested however, that you can slice off the mold with room to spare, to make sure it has been entirely removed. The rest of the cheese will be fine, evidently. For me, I guess it would depend on how long and how severe the mold. For the soft or semi soft cheeses, mold can more easily spread, and therefore you should just throw these away if mold appears. Its good to know though, that you need not toss a whole brick of great cheese out, if a small corner has a tiny bit of mold. Its not a pleasant thought though, of course. Checking your refrigerator weekly or a couple of times a week, is a great idea to remind yourself of what you have. There is nothing worse than finding something you had wanted to eat as leftovers, but just completely forgot about until it was too late.
Some people like to freeze cheese, but just know that the texture may get crumbly after it is defrosted. The flavor of the cheese may somewhat diminish as well. If you do have frozen cheese, it is best used for cooking with. Cow cheeses don't tend to hold up as well when frozen, as goat ans sheep cheese do. Take time defrosting your frozen cheese, and avoid the temptation to bring them to room temperature right away. Putting in the refrigerator to defrost is a good idea. Don't store frozen for more than one or two months. When you prepare a dish such as baked macaroni and cheese, then freeze it, it does just fine. It seems that being cooked, then frozen helps with this.
Make the most of your cheese "investments" by taking the time to store them well.
Storing and Keeping Your Cheese
Cheese storage Poll
What is your favorite way to store cheese?
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