It would seem that there is nothing easier than how to store cheese in the refrigerator. Put the product on a free place in the main chamber and take it slowly. The experience of the hostesses shows that this is not the right approach. No matter what the shelf life of a fermented milk product bought or prepared by one’s own hands, certain rules must be observed. Otherwise, you can not only degrade the taste of the original snack, but also turn it into a real poison for the body. In addition to the basic recommendations, there are several nuances, compliance with which allows you to use the beneficial properties of cheeses for as long as possible.
General rules and recommendations
It is recommended to place the cheese in a cool and humid place. The best option is a refrigerator. In this case, the following nuances should be taken into account: what to put the product in and where to place it in the refrigerator.
First of all, you need to figure out at what temperature to store cheese in the refrigerator so that it does not mold. The optimum temperature regime is + 6 ... 8 ℃. Manufacturers recommend preserving some varieties at a temperature of 0 ... + 4 ℃, and it is better to store expensive French cheeses in warmer conditions.
Humidity at the storage location should be between 85-90%. If the moisture level is low, the product will dry quickly, and if it is high, it will deteriorate.
If there is high humidity at the storage location, place a piece of refined sugar next to the cheese. Sugar absorbs excess moisture and prolongs the shelf life of the product.
The best place to store cheese in the refrigerator is shelves or boxes for vegetables and fruits. It is not recommended to place the product near the freezer or in the doors. Frequent temperature changes reduce shelf life.
To preserve the cheese, wrap it in parchment (wax paper) after purchase and seal it with adhesive tape. This will prevent mold and drying out of the product. Be sure to mark or use a sticker to mark which variety is stored in the package and indicate the date of purchase. This will help control the expiration date.
For storing cheese glass or enamel container can be used. But plastic packaging is not recommended, since the product will acquire the taste and smell of plastic. To protect hard cheese from drying out, wrap it in parchment and place in polyethylene. When packaging the product, avoid creating a vacuum. In this form, cheese can be taken with you on the road, for example, when traveling by train.
If a small mold spot appears on the cheese, carefully cut off the affected area. Wrap the remaining whole product in clean, waxed paper.
Different types of cheese should be stored in individual packages and separately from other products.. This will prevent the mixing of aromas and protect the product from quick spoilage and loss of taste.
The main thing that every housewife should remember is that the cheese must breathe. In no case should it be wrapped in film or left in a plastic bag for a long time. This will cause a rapid growth of mold, the multiplication of harmful bacteria, a change in taste for the worse.
The best option for storage is waxed or parchment baking paper. Having brought the cheese home, you need to get it from the bag, remove the film and wrap it in paper, which will protect it from weathering and at the same time allow the product to breathe. You can stick a sticker on the packaging on which to write with a marker the date of purchase and the grade of the product. This instruction does not apply to pickled cheeses that are best kept in their own pickle.
During long-term storage, you can put the bundle in a cottage cheese pancake or a spacious plastic bag, leaving it open. This will save from excessive drying. Here are some more tips on how to properly store cheese.
- Do not freeze the cheese if you want to enjoy its smell and texture. After staying in the freezer, it changes properties, begins to crumble.
- Place cheese on shelves near the vegetable department. Do not place it on the door shelves or near the freezer.
- If mold has appeared on hard cheese, then it can be cut, and eat the remaining piece of the product.
- Do not buy a lot of product in reserve. Make a purchase up to 7 days in advance.
- Cheese can be stored not only in the refrigerator. It is wrapped in linen or cotton cloth, soaked in salt water, placed in a saucepan and kept in the pantry.
The optimum temperature range for long-term storage of cheeses is + 6 ... + 8 ° C. Relative humidity should be around 90%. Such indicators are difficult to maintain at home, so no one buys whole heads for home food. Unless in the case of a big feast, when at one time they plan to cook a lot of cheese dishes and slices.
All lovers of cheese can be advised to purchase a special cottage cheese pancake. They are made of plastic, ceramic, glass. They even release “smart” syrnitsy, letting out only water molecules and trapping the smell inside. A piece of refined sugar is put inside a regular cheese container. It takes away excess moisture, prevents mold from getting divorced.
The maximum shelf life of hard cheese at home in high humidity is 10 days. Some hard varieties (parmesan, ripe gruyere, cheddar), with proper packaging and in good conditions, are stored for more than a month. The larger the piece of hard or semi-hard cheese, the longer it will be stored. It is only necessary to cut off small pieces from it and make sure that mold does not start.
Hard varieties can be stored in the freezer for about 3 months, but after that it is better to cook dishes from them than to eat. For short-term storage, pieces of cheese are placed in an enamel or glass dish and kept in the refrigerator. Vacuum store packaging is only suitable if it is not opened. A large piece of parmesan is kept in the refrigerator, wrapping a cloth and foil soaked in salt.
Expensive mold cheeses have a strong odor. So that the smell does not affect other products and does not spread in the refrigerator, the cheese can be put in a plastic container or sealed in food foil, film. Every 3 days, it must be taken out and opened for 40-50 minutes so that it breathes.
Refined French varieties (brie, bursin, camembert, Roquefort and dozens of others) love warmth, so there can be no talk of a freezer. For the future they also never buy, take 1-2 receptions. Keeping them in the refrigerator for a long time is undesirable, but if you had to, then leave it in the original shell, wrap the paper with a slice.
Brine and soft grades
Soft cheese can be wrapped in plastic wrap or parchment, but can not be stored for a long time. It is believed that the average shelf life of soft cheese is 3 days. Soft cream cheese after opening the package begins to dry on the second day. If mold has formed on soft cheese, then it must be discarded, since mold is likely to spread into the product.
Some varieties, such as mozzarella, are usually kept in their own liquid. Only in this case, the product will retain a soft texture and taste. Brynza, feta, suluguni and other brine varieties are best placed in a container with brine from water or whey. The concentration of brine is approximately 16%. To remove excess salt from the cheese, you can cut it into pieces and soak them for 10 hours in boiled water.
Homemade cheese is consumed for four days, when dried, it is placed for several hours in milk. Before use, any cheese is taken out of the refrigerator and allowed to warm up a little. In this case, the smell and taste manifest themselves best.
No plastic films
It may be a revelation, but cheese can be called a living being: it breathes, sweats and ages. When the cheese is wrapped in polyethylene, it stops breathing, simply not having this opportunity. In the best case, its taste will be disgusting, in the worst - harmful bacteria will get into it.
Jake Lane, who studies different types of cheeses, explains that plastic packaging often turns the taste of cheese into the taste of plastic. So, if you do not want to eat plastic, having spent several hundred on cheese, it is better to shift it from a plastic package immediately after you bring it home.
Wrap the cheese yourself
After you removed the plastic film, you need to wrap the cheese in something so that it does not dry. An alternative to plastic can be parchment. It lets in enough air to “breathe” and, at the same time, will not allow the cheese to dry.
There is a special cheese paper, but in order not to bother, you can wrap it in plain parchment - it will also perfectly preserve the product.
How to wrap
In order to reliably wrap cheese, you will need:
Cut a large square of parchment, about two or three times larger than your cheese. Put a piece of cheese diagonally, with the thick end in the corner, thin - in the center.
Wrap the cheese, sequentially bending the sides, as if you were packing a gift. Bend the “tail” of your package as shown in the photo and stick it with adhesive tape.
If the photo is not enough for you to understand how to gently wrap the cheese, you can look video . Two rollers show in detail how to wrap round and rectangular pieces of cheese.
When you wrap the cheese, stick a paper tape or sticker on it and write on it what kind of cheese (if you buy different types and store them at the same time) and the date when it was purchased. So you do not risk eating spoiled product.
From the moment the whey separates from the cottage cheese, the process of dehydration begins in the cheese, in other words, it dries. To help him retain moisture, you can send the cheese in parchment into an open plastic bag.
In addition, you can store hard cheese in polyethylene, but make sure that it is not wrapped tightly, and there is enough space between the cheese and the bag.
This type of cheese has a rather sharp taste and aroma, so you should keep it away from other varieties of cheese. So that all the products in the refrigerator do not smell like your favorite cheese, it is best to wrap it in parchment and put it in a container.
When it comes to soft cream cheeses, the advice to avoid plastic wrap can be ignored. Many people think that soft cheeses are best stored in plastic packaging, because only it can protect them from drying out. However, there is no consensus - someone prefers to store them in parchment, as well as hard varieties.
Very mild cheeses, such as ricotta or mozzarella, should be stored in their liquids in a plastic container. You need to be especially careful about them - soft cheeses are not kept as long as their hard comrades.
Advantages and disadvantages of storing cheese in a freezer
Specialists who know how to properly store cheese of one sort or another are categorically opposed to such an approach as freezing the product. They motivate this with a number of arguments:
- As a result of freezing, the consistency of cheeses changes radically and it is impossible to restore it.
- After the cheese has spent at least some time in the freezer, it will begin to crumble heavily. It can only be used as a sprinkle for dishes.
- When frozen, the product loses a significant part of its taste and smell. Some varieties of the product after defrosting become similar to rubber.
On the other hand, this method is ideal to preserve the ingredient for as long as possible. They are often used in pizzerias and restaurants, and the dishes from this do not seem less tasty. It turns out that in extreme cases, you can resort to such an effect on the cheese. By the way, due to freezing, he will not even lose his main useful qualities and components.
The specifics of the storage of cheeses, depending on their varieties
In order not only to preserve the cheese, but also to maintain it in optimal condition, you need to remember some specific points that apply to certain varieties of the product. In this case, it will really please with its properties, without causing any trouble.
- Hard grades. The maximum shelf life for them is 10 days and then, subject to high humidity. Products such as parmesan, cheddar, gruyere can be kept in the refrigerator for up to a month. A piece can be stored even longer if it is large. In this case, you just need to regularly cut off the signs of crust or mold. Such varieties are kept in the freezer for up to three months, but after this the product is better used for cooking, rather than serving.
Tip: You can even increase the shelf life of Parmesan without sacrificing taste and aroma. To do this, wrap a piece in linen or cotton cloth soaked in salt water, then wrap it with foil and put it on a refrigerator shelf with a suitable temperature.
- Cheeses with a mold. To express and specific smell of these products did not transfer to other products, you must use a hermetically sealed plastic container. It can be replaced by a film and food foil, but in this case the dairy product will need to be taken out every 2-3 days from the package for 40 minutes so that the cheese “breathes”. Delicate delicate cheese is strictly forbidden to freeze. They are generally better to take only 1-2 meals, without cleaning in the refrigerator. In this case, we do not discard the original shell, but cover the cut with wax paper.
- Soft and brine varieties. The shelf life of such products ranges from several hours to 3 days. Opened cheese begins to dry on the second day, but this can be prevented if you use cling film or parchment for baking. But if on the surface of such cheese darkening or signs of mold appear, it must be disposed of. It is already impossible to clear it, because pathogenic microorganisms spread not only along the surface of the mass, but also penetrate its texture.
The shelf life of homemade cheese again depends on its variety. If this is a classic product of processed cottage cheese with a small amount of soda, then it is stored up to 3-4 days. When signs of drying appear, the piece is placed in milk for 5-6 hours.
Many housewives are concerned about the question: is it possible to freeze cheese in a freezer for storage? Experts oppose freezing, and this is due to several factors. First of all, frozen cheese changes its texture and crumbles a lot after thawing. As a rule, such a product can only be used as an ingredient in the preparation of hot dishes.
Cheeses that have visited the freezer lose their taste and aroma. Some varieties after defrosting become rubber at all. The exception is homemade cottage cheese, which is close to cheese by the method of production. It tolerates freezing well, without losing its nutritional and taste qualities.
Sometimes freezing is the only way to save a large amount of product for a long time. Before placing the cheese in the freezer, cut it into slices or grate it. Fill the blank in zip bags, stick a sticker indicating the grade and date of freezing, and then send it to the freezer. This storage method is used in catering establishments.
Features of storage of various varieties of cheese
The method and duration of storage largely depends on the type of cheese.
Solid species are kept at home for up to 15 days, and the whole head can be stored for up to 2 months (in intact factory packaging). It is important to ensure that the product has the correct storage conditions. The optimum temperature is + 5 ... 8 ℃, and the humidity is over 85%.
Varieties such as gruyere, cheddar and parmesan can be stored for up to 1 month. Periodically check the product for mold and cut off affected areas. The larger the piece, the better and longer it lasts.
Hard cheeses are stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. Defrost the product immediately before use. However, be prepared for the fact that after freezing the cheese will not be as aromatic and tasty as fresh.
To preserve the taste of the product, wrap it in a cotton cloth soaked in salt water and then in foil. Store such cheese on the shelves of the refrigerator.
How many days can be stored soft cheeses? On average, the shelf life is 3 days at a temperature of + 4 ... 5 ℃ and air humidity from 90%.
If mold appears on the product, the entire piece must be disposed of. Cutting off the affected area will not bring the proper result. Due to the soft structure of the cheese, pathogenic microorganisms quickly infect the entire product.
Special storage mode required pickled cheeses (feta, suluguni, Ossetian or Abkhazian). They should be kept in salted brine in a glass or enameled container. Shelf life - 1-2 months at temperatures up to +8 ℃.
If the cheese turned out to be excessively salty, soak it for 8-10 hours in milk before serving. Do not fill the product with hot water. This will not only lead to the loss of beneficial properties, but also make the cheese viscous.
To successfully store home-made cheese at home, periodically check the brine product. Если на поверхности появилась пленочка, замените рассол свежим. Козий или овечий сыры рекомендуется съесть как можно быстрее, поскольку срок их хранения не превышает 3 суток.
Существует мнение, что cottage cheese also applies to brine cheeses. However, it should be stored in glass packaging and without brine.
Cream cheese in the opened packaging can be stored no more than 2-3 days. After this period, it dries up, changes the structure and loses its original taste.
Blue cheese For storage, wrap in cling film and then place in an airtight container. This will prevent the spread of its specific flavor throughout the refrigerator.
Gourmet Varieties (Camembert, Roquefort, Brie, Dor Blue, etc.) is undesirable to store in the refrigerator, because they like warmth.
Adyghe cheese Store in vacuum packaging or in a sealed glass container. Proper storage organization will save the product up to 1 month.
Smoked Cheese Pigtail must be stored at a temperature of 0 ... + 4 ℃ and humidity up to 85%. The shelf life of the product is 75 days in vacuum packaging and 7-10 days in parchment.
Keep tofu cheese preferably in the original packaging in the refrigerator. If the container is damaged, transfer the product to a sealed container or bag with zip fastener. This product requires constant high humidity. To extend the shelf life, fill it with distilled water, but do not forget to change it daily to prevent the growth of bacteria.
Cheese is a valuable product that has a special taste, aroma and is characterized by a high protein content. To preserve it for a long time, follow the simple rules, taking into account the variety and observing the recommended shelf life. And best of all, get exactly as much cheese as the family can eat in a few days.
To figure out how to properly store cheese, check out the following videos:
Young mother, wife and freelancer part-time. Being a lawyer by training, I am used to collecting and providing the most complete and reliable information. Constantly improving in the professional field and striving for personal growth and development.
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