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Carolyn Tillie

Long-term storage of cheese

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In CDH's question Marketing vs. Preservation, he asked about the plastic wrap that is so often the culprit to fast degeneration of cheese. You indicated that "pre-cut, plastic-wrapped cheese is perfectly fine, because it is rare that a piece is more than 48 hours old."

My query is this -- I'm quite a cheese fanatic and living in the Napa county, have access to some amazing cheeses, both imported and domestic. However, I don't necessarily want to have to shop for my cheese selection every other day to ensure freshness and I like to keep a large selection on hand (eight to ten varieties at a time).

What is the best way for a home consumer to keep a large selection of cheeses? Can you discuss how home refrigerators might damage our cheese? I guess, in short, how does one become a home-based cheese monger?

Thanks ever so much!

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Segregate blues from non-blues; use plastic (Saran-type) wrap for semi-firm cheeses (Fontina, Morbier); use flimsy, bakery-stlye, pastry-grab paper for chevres and super-soft cheeses; use aluminum foil over-wrapped with plastic wrap for hard cheeses. Keep all cheeses as low in the rfrgrtr as poss. (coolest, most humidity); your home rfrgrtr is your friend, not your enemy.

Only cut off as much cheese from the host piece as you intend to wipe out at that sitting. Immediately re-wrap and re-refrigerate each host piece.

Not exactly rocket science.

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