In Venezuela the variety of white and fresh cheeses is unimaginable: telita, guayanes, hand, guayamano, duro, zuliano… Maybe that’s why my family is addicted to cheese. We joked about being a family of mice because 1 kg didn’t last a single visit to the fridge.
When I moved out of my parents house, I bought the same amount of cheese as my parents’ used to buy for their house, but it rotted rather quickly. Obviously I had to buy less! So I adjusted the amount and still, sometimes, I had to throw away some of the cheese. And that really pissed me off.
So I set out to investigate how to keep it fresh for longer periods of time. Here are 5 ways to make cheeses last much longer in the fridge.
# 1 Do not buy cheese to feed an army
It is best to buy small portions even if it’s annoying to go more often to the market. But I assure you the effort is worth it. Its taste will always be fresh and, having no cheese for a week in the fridge, you will not forget that it is there and will definitely not spoil.
# 2 Replace paper from time to time
Especially with fatty cheeses that sweat a lot. It is important that, every time you take out the cheese to eat, discard the paper you had and wrap it with a new one. Thus, you will always delay the loss of freshness a little more.
# 3 Avoid plastic at all costs
It is one of the worst ways to store cheese. With the days, the food absorbs the odors of the plastic and there is no way to remove them. Cheese is a living thing with enzymes and bacteria that need some air and moisture to survive. As it is not a porous material, the plastic eliminates that microenvironment necessary for its proper storage. Therefore, it is important to use cheese paper or other similar effective methods.
# 4 Use parchment paper instead
Wrap the piece of cheese in paper and then in an unsealed plastic bag. This will form a barrier between the cheese and the plastic, while maintaining the right balance between breathing and insulation.
# 5 Keep it in the right place
That is, in the vegetables drawer that is at the end of the refrigerator and away from the freezer cold. The idea of storing some types of cheese in the refrigerator is between 35 and 45 degrees F. A lower temperature could freeze it and that would ruin its texture and consistency.
**Extra Tip: Use labels to identify the type of cheese and date of storage.