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Cheese Q & A
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by: Celebrity Recipes Magazine

It's creamy and heavenly to some; dry and hellish (in smell) for others. Cheese is alot of things to a lot of people and also comes in various guises that would surprise a gourmand. Here are a few more info that could enlighten cheese lovers on this foodstuff.

How do you care for cheese at home?
The Europeans and Americans differ as to how. For Europeans, cheese is a living foodstuff that should be allowed to change as it progresses and develops flavors. As such, they usually store cheese in an environment that's close to room temperaure (or somewhat lower). The Americans on the other hand, view cheese differently - as a foodstuff that has already developed. As such, they store it in he refrigerator when not being consumed.

Should cheese be frozen?
One can. However, it is not encouraged. Also, only several cheese types can be frozen successfully. These include: Brick, Cheddar, Edam, Gouda, Muenster, Port-du-Salut, Swiss, Provolone, Mozzarella and Camembert (stored in its original package, otherwise, don't freeze once opened). With regards to other cheeses, they can be frozen but only in pieces that are one-inch thick. Moreover, they can only be frozen for six months at the most.

Should cheese be thrown away once molds develop on it?
Not always. Blue cheeses like Roquefort, Stilton and Gorgonzola have molds that are integral to their flavors and eventual development. For the others, however, the molds should be scraped off before being consumed. Regarding blue cheeses again, they should be store in separate, air-tight containers so as not to give their flavors on other cheeses and foodstuffs.

What's the difference between unripe and ripe cheeses?
Unripe cheeses are the soft cheeses like cottage, cream and our very own kesong puti. They are generally consumed immediately while fresh-otherwise, they spoil. Nonetheless, there are unripe cheeses that because of their low moisture content can actually be stored and kept for several weeks. Ripe cheeses are cheeses that are cured using a combination of bacteria and mold. They are divided into four types: soft, semi-soft, hard and very hard. Obviously, they can be stored longer than the unripe cheeses. Examples of these include: Cheddar, Edam, Provolone, Swiss etc.

At what temperature should cheese be served, eaten and enjoyed?
Cheese is best savored at room temperature - or any temperature that is best for people to eat cheese. If you refrigerate your cheese, serve the hard cheese first. Allow some time for the soft cheeses to thaw first before serving them.

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September 23, 2017

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