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Store and Care for Cheese

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  • HillJ Apr 23, 2013 07:14 AM

Since the launch of this board, I've made more than my usual trips to the cheese shop. It's time to take storing the investment in cheese love a tad more seriously and the good folks over @ Serious Eats offers a few recommendations for the basics here:
http://www.seriouseats.com/2013/04/ho...

including investing in cheese wrap to keep those precious gems in good and condition: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002...

What tips do you have for proper cheese storage?

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  1. Buy smaller amounts and let your cheesemonger store the larger pieces for you until you need more.

    Obviously that's not practical for your basic cooking cheeses like cheddar or Parmesan that many of us keep on hand in larger quantities but those cheeses are also sturdier. I like Formaticum's Cheese Paper but I've also just wrapped in waxed paper and kept in a Tupperware-type container.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Sushiqueen36

      My cheesemonger seems to like my buying business but I've never had a conversation about storing my cheese buys for me.

      Is this common?

      1. re: HillJ

        I think she meant, "Don't buy it until you need it".

        Please correct me if I'm wrong.

        1. re: DoobieWah

          I haven't bought large amounts of any one particular cheese, unless I was hosting a party, but I have bought more variety. Some cheeses have diff storage needs than others. I don't have the opportunity to shop at independent cheese shops as often as I would like so most of my buys have been in grocery markets cheese dept. While knowledgeable about the cheese they are selling, not many questions were answered about storage.

          1. re: DoobieWah

            Yep, Doobie - that's what I meant!

      2. I've learned to buy cheese in small amounts, so a piece rarely lasts a week in our house. I keep them wrapped in parchment inside an open plastic bag and store in the cheese drawer. And I never touch cheese with my hands, except that what I'm eating of course - I read that the bacteria from your hands can speed up mold development.

        1. i appreciate these helpful hints.
          have u used parchment paper?

          3 Replies
          1. re: jpr54_1

            Yes I have. I start out with the cheese shops wrap and then if need be I switch to a clean piece of parchment. I especially like the Reynolds wrap that is parchment on one side and foil on the other so I have options depending on the cheese. For instance, I'm finding that it is true that Blue cheese likes foil wrap.

            1. re: HillJ

              Just foil for blue cheese? I have tried with plastic wrap and it always goes bad.

              1. re: fldhkybnva

                That's what I've found to be useful for blues, foil only.

          2. how do I properly store a cheese like burratta which is sold in plastic tub with liquid?

            4 Replies
            1. re: jpr54_1

              I keep burrata in the tub with the liquid. Some people wrap it in plastic and keep it refrigerated that way. I don't like plastic wrap on cheese and once cut it should be eaten in a few days.

              1. re: HillJ

                Burrata should be eaten on the day of purchase, if possible. It declines in quality quickly even if it's still "good."

                1. re: Ruth Lafler

                  Right. It usually is because the piece is small and the taste is outstanding. But if I had the option to store it I wouldn't beyond a few days. Once you cut it open you pretty much lose that wonderful soft cheese.

              2. re: jpr54_1

                Fresh mozzarellas (and burrata) are often sold in their own whey and/or in a lightly salted brine. if you aren't going to eat all of your mozz in about 3 days (gasp!) I recommend dumping out that liquid and replacing it every 2-3 days with fresh clean water (filtered) with a pinch of salt. It will not make your fresh cheese immortal- burrata goes sour in about 2 weeks from the day its formed- if you're lucky- but it might give you 3-4 more days

              3. Thanks! I have had horrible time keeping blue cheese fresh. I know that the cheese should breathe but the freezer paper in a bag didn't work and it always grows pink mold. My cheddar and Parmesan keeps quite well wrapped in plastic wrap although I use it fairly quickly. Any tips for blue cheese?

                2 Replies
                1. re: fldhkybnva

                  fldhkybnva,
                  I am not an expert and I'm in my infancy of learning about cheeses. I have been trying any and all blues (20+ varieties) for the past several months, and have never had a problem with storage. Sometimes for up to an entire week. I just loosely wrap in parchment paper (Reynold's brand) and then place in a gallon size plastic baggie, left OPEN. I've also read you should place your cheese in the frig where it will maintain the same constant temp. For me, it's an unused meat/deli drawer. Hope this helps!

                  1. re: Phoebe

                    Thanks, I'll give it a try.