Fine cheese is a scrumptious and complex food that can be enjoyed in various ways. From cheese plates to charcuterie boards, this dairy product is a staple in many cheese-loving households. However, storing fine cheese is an art form that requires proper care and attention. In this blog post, we'll discuss three essential points to keep in mind when storing fine cheese at home.
1. Farmhouse and artisan cheeses are "live" products and must be stored in the fridge
Farmhouse and artisan cheeses are "live" products, which means that they contain live bacteria and other micro organisms. As a result, they require proper storage to maintain their quality and safety. The best way (and really the only way) to store fine cheese is in the fridge. The temperature in the fridge (below 6C) slows down the bacterial activity and helps to maintain the cheese's flavour and texture, as well as its safety. Just as you would not leave your steak in a shed, please do not leave you cheese in a shed or another non-refrigerated contraption.
2. Store cheese in a vegetable compartment wrapped in cheese paper
When storing cheese in the fridge, it's important to wrap it in cheese paper, also known as duplex paper. Cheese paper is designed to allow some air while preventing cheese from drying out or suffocating. The best place to store cheese in the fridge is in the vegetable compartment, as it is the most humid part of the fridge and will help to keep the cheese moist. It's essential to keep cheese away from strong-smelling foods such as onions and garlic as they can affect the cheese's flavour.
3. The longevity of farmhouse and artisan cheeses in your fridge is determined by their moisture content
The longevity of farmhouse and artisan cheeses in your fridge is determined by their moisture content. Soft, blue cheese cut from the wheel will keep for up to two weeks. Individually packaged soft cheeses will last until the date on the packaging, which is typically when they are at their "peak" and have the best flavour.
Firm and hard cheeses can last for up to a month, although they are likely to develop mould on the exposed surfaces. This does not necessarily mean that the cheese is spoiled, however. The mould can be removed, and the rest of the cheese can still be enjoyed
In conclusion, storing farmhouse and artisan cheeses at home requires some care and attention, but it is well worth the effort to enjoy these delicious products at their best. By storing cheese in the fridge, using vegetable compartments and cheese paper, and paying attention to the cheese's moisture content, you can keep your cheese fresh and safe to eat for as long as possible.
The Cheese Lady x
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