Basic Cheese Tips

For better enjoyment of your cheese:

  • - Do not freeze your cheese. Do this once and you’ll understand why.
  • - If you’re going to eat the cheese within a day or two, it can be left out at room temperature. However, if your going to have a bite on Monday and not return to it until say, Thursday, you might want to refrigerate. Store cheeses in the refrigerator, around 35° F to 40° F.
  • - When wrapping your cheese for storage, wrap tight enough to prevent drying out, but loose enough to allow the cheese to continue to develop it’s taste. Because cheeses need to breathe as they are stored, experts usually do not recommend covering them in clear plastic wrap for long-term storage. Wax paper is a better choice. Best choice? Those little plastic tuperware dishes with sealable lids, or the similar disposable variety.
  • - Serve Cheese at room temperature.
  • - The younger the cheese, the more it will taste like milk/cream and the less complex the flavors (some would say “dull”).
  • - The harder the cheese, the longer it’s shelf life.
  • - Blue cheese mold spores are alive and they will migrate to all other foods, so place blue cheeses in separate containers.
  • - If your cheese didn’t have mold when you bought it, but it does now… cut ½ inch off and use it soon. Molds are generally harmless.
  • - Natural hard rinds can be used to flavor soups and stocks. After a little time remove the softened rinds and feel free to eat.
  • - When cutting fresh mozzarella, it’s best to use a serrated knife, or the cheese will tear .
  • - To prevent a clumpy mess when shredding semisoft cheese with a box grater, spray grater with a nonstick cooking spray before you start.
  • - Measure cheese for cooking by weight for best result in recipes. General rule is 4 ounces of cheese equals one cup shredded or grated.
  • - To prevent cheeses such as Swiss and Mozzarella from becoming stringy during cooking, add a little wine or lemon juice before melting them.
  • - Cheeses are easier to grate when cold from the refrigerator.

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