Cheese is a food that many love to include in their dishes but, due to its dairy origin, it is delicate to store. This does not mean that it is impossible, but it does have to take into account some factors before trying to store it for a long time. In the following article, we will explain how to freeze cheese in the most appropriate way so that you can use it and make the most of it when you need it and for a long time.
How to freeze cheese?
Before learning how to keep cheese frozen, you should know that not all of them respond equally to low temperatures. Although cream cheeses contain a large percentage of fat that separates from the whey when returned to room temperature, they can be kept in the freezer knowing that once they are used they will probably serve as a base for other preparations that require beaten, such as cream or cheese sauce. When whisking, the texture is improved although it will not be as it originally was, that is why it is no longer recommended to spread or eat alone.
The best way to freeze this type of dairy is in its original packaging, tightly covered. The fresh cheeses can withstand low temperatures, although you should know that once thawed aroma and flavor vary slightly. To store it properly, the first thing you need to do is dry them with absorbent paper and then wrap them in transparent plastic foil or in a zip-lock plastic bag. After this, they can be frozen.
The lean cheeses are ideal for freezing because they have less fat. In fact, many times the prolonged cold improves its original characteristics. It is advisable to wrap the cheese in a sheet of plastic kitchen paper to preserve food and from there cover it with the paper, the box or the original container before freezing it. If the cheese has a strong smell, it is best to put it in a plastic container with a lid to avoid contact with the outside air.
For its part, hard or semi-hard cheeses require several layers of transparent plastic and also be packed in an airtight container. Some people use to put a piece of hard bread to absorb moisture, this is not necessary.
Although these dairy products are at low temperatures, their fermentation process continues, so if there are whitish spots or signs of mold, the area must be rubbed with absorbent paper moistened with olive oil. Another option is to scrape or cut the bad piece.
The shredded cheeses or laminates are well preserved in the freezer. In the case of grated, just store them in a zip-lock bag, making sure to remove all the air before putting it in the freezer. While the sheets can be stacked in packages of 10 (separated from each other by their respective wrappers) and from there to the freezer, either wrapped in plastic wrap or in an airtight bag. If the laminate is done at home, each square should be separated with paper before putting it in the bag, to avoid sticking.
Now, to know how to freeze cheese optimally, it is important to think that the appropriate temperature depends on the type of cheese: if it is soft, it is best preserved between 4 and 8 degrees, while if it is a hardcover, the ideal is Freezer is between 8 and 12 degrees.
To defrost the cheese you have to put it in the refrigerator or refrigerator for at least an hour before consuming it; however, the longer the time passes the more moisture it will retain, so it is best to leave it a little longer. Whereas grated and rolled cheeses can be used instantly if applied to hot foods.
If you do not have transparent plastic paper, you can substitute aluminum foil, but you must also use an airtight bag if required. There are freezer bags on the market that come with a vacuum device. This can be an alternative to avoid the continuous use of paper and plastic bags to store frozen cheese.
In addition, we must also know that freezing times vary according to the type of cheese: the softer, the less time they should be at low temperatures. The maximum time should be 15 days for soft cheese and one month for a harder cheese. If at the time of consuming not all the cheese is going to be used, it is best to cut the piece at once to let the rest remain frozen. And they should always be handled with your hands and a clean knife, to avoid contaminating the plastic paper, the bag or the container and damaging the remaining piece.