How To Store Cheese And Avoid Mold
A few tricks will help cheese stay fresh in your refrigerator.
Cheese can make many dishes even more delicious. Its creamy texture and wide-ranging flavors full of umami create dishes that are irresistible as they are tasty.
That's why it's not surprising that you might grab that deal at the supermarket when your favorite kind of cheese is on sale! Buying in bulk may hit you later when you get home though: how will you store that big hunk of cheese?
You just need to know how to store cheese so you can buy cheese in bulk with less fear of it going bad before you've eaten your fill of it.
1 For soft cheese: mozzarella, cream cheese, processed cheese, etc.
Soft cheese is not recommended to be stored for a long period of time. You really should use it up once the package is opened. That's because it's in danger of losing moisture and growing mold.
If you have to store soft fresh cheese such as kesong puti, mozzarella, and cream cheese, these are best wrapped tightly to prevent mold. Mold loves soft, moist food, and this kind of cheese is the perfect food. You need to keep it in an airtight container to make sure it stays as mold-free for as long as possible. Remember that air is the enemy since mold spores are airborne and are invisible to the naked eye.
This airtight container can be in the form of plastic or submerged in a liquid.
To store soft fresh cheese wrapped in plastic, wrap it in either parchment paper (if it's firm enough) and then plastic wrap, pressing the plastic against the surface of the cheese. If you have it, a vacuum sealer is perfect so it will not only be airtight but also vacuum packed. This applies to cheddar cheese and even processed cheese too since, despite its ability to stave off mold, it easily becomes hard and loses moisture if not wrapped well.
To store cheese in a liquid, such as kesong puti or feta, you can place these in a jar and fill it with oil. You can even season the oil to marinate it. You can also fill it with a brine solution. This brine solution is usually just water and salt boiled and cooled. It can also be seasoned as desired with spices and herbs just like the oil. Just note that the brine can impart its flavors more readily to soft cheese.
2 For semi- and hard cheese: Parmesan, Pecorino, quezo de bola, etc.
This type of cheese doesn't need to be as airtight as softer cheeses, so you can wrap it more loosely. Harder cheese such as Parmesan and Edam wedges can be lightly coated in oil or butter to seal in its moisture while staving mold formation. Then this should be wrapped in parchment or wax paper and then simply placed in a plastic bag before storing to keep out odors while maintaining its moisture and allowing the cheese to breathe. Quezo de bola is can be wrapped with the wax it came in (or you can use parchment paper) and then placed in a plastic bag.
Once wrapped, the best place for cheese is in the refrigerator, not in the freezer since the freezer can change the texture and structure of the cheese when thawed.
Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!
Got your own version of the classic dishes? Pa-share naman! Get your recipe published on Yummy.ph by submitting your recipe here.