Fulfill your Cheesy Temptations!
Cheese, if eaten in appropriate quantities, is good for health and is a source of protein, calcium, and phosphorus. The whole bad blame goes to the saturated fat content.
Only some cheeses can be successfully frozen. Hard or semi-hard cheeses freeze well without making much of a difference to the texture and taste, but soft cheeses like cottage or cream cheese can become watery and may completely lose its form. The best cheeses to freeze are mozzarella, Romano, Swiss, cheddar, provolone, and many more.
Blue cheese will retain its flavor, but may not retain its shape after freezing. Freezing of cottage, cream, and ricotta cheese should be avoided. Hard cheeses last for a few months, but soft cheeses last only for a few weeks.
Some Tips For You
- Don't forget to write the date (on which you freeze) and type of the cheese on the bag/container.
- Do not freeze the cheese along with the plastic, because it has its own taste, which may be imparted to the cheese. You can wrap it in parchment/cheese/wax paper and then loosely in a plastic bag. This allows the cheese to breathe without losing the moisture.
- If you see mold, cut out that part (if the other side is proper), and preserve the other unaffected part.
Freezing Cheese as a Whole Block
Hard and semi-hard cheese can be preserved in this way. Examples are Parmesan, Cheddar, Gouda cheese, etc. Soft cheese will get crumbly and lose its shape. If you have a large block, cut it into half or one pound each. There are many options to freeze it.
- Use a cheese paper if available. This will keep the cheese in the best form possible.
- Use wax paper to wrap and then use a foil. It can be placed in an airtight container.
- You can also use food plastic wrap and keep it in a Ziploc or an airtight container.
- Leave it in the original pack only if you want to store it only for few days.
See to it that the plastic or the container you're using is properly sealed. When you want to use it, remember to thaw it. Move it from the freezer to the refrigerator and let it take time to retain its moisture. It may turn crumbly. You can then use it for cooking. The crumbly texture makes no difference to the taste. This method will preserve the cheese for a few months. If it's possible, try to avoid this method. You can always slice or grate the cheese and preserve.
Freezing Cheese in the Slice Form
- You can buy pre-sliced cheese or cut it at home.
- Cut parchment paper in the same size as the cheese. This paper is used because of its non-sticky property. Hence, the slices do not stick to each other while freezing.
- Keep one paper sheet above and one below the cheese slice. Make a stack of it.
- Keep the stack in an airtight container.
This method will preserve the cheese for a few months. The advantage of this method is that you don't need to thaw it much. If you want to carry sandwiches in your lunch box, you can use a frozen slice of cheese. It will thaw by the time you sit to eat. Also, the slices can be directly added for broiling/roasting.
Freezing Shredded Cheese
This is the best method as there is nothing to lose in it. The cheese is already shredded; hence, even if it gets crumbly, it can be used.
- Shred or grate the block of cheese.
- Use a Ziploc bag. Fill in the shredded cheese.
- Leave about half an inch from the top.
- Remove as much as air possible and seal the bag.
You can then use the frozen cheese as needed.
So the next time there is a big sale on your favorite cheese, do not worry. Buy it, preserve, and enjoy it for the weeks or months to come.