It’s National Cheese Lovers Day today. Friends of the Sustainability team will know that we are passionate about our food, and harbor a particular love for cheese. We also have a penchant for preventing food waste, which is a travesty when it comes to all things cheesy.
So without further ado… here’s our top 3 tips for preventing cheese waste!
1. Store it properly, and you’ll never regret a thing!
We’ve all experienced the devastation that comes when your extra mature M&S Cornish Cruncher cheddar hardens in the fridge because you didn’t wrap it properly. Do the following, and never experience this pain ever again:
Hard, aged cheeses (e.g. Parmesan): Wrap in parchment paper, then wrap in cling film. Or just wrap in cling film… because life’s too short!
Blue cheeses: Wrap in cling film.
Semi-hard and hard cheeses (e.g. Cheddar): Wrap in cling film.
Soft, semi-soft, and smelly cheeses (e.g. Brie or Goats Cheese): Pop it in your best airtight Tupperware.
Fresh cheeses in water (e.g. Mozzarella or Feta): Leave it in its packet. If you’ve got leftover, store in a Tupperware container with fresh water to keep moist.
2. Plan your cheese.
I think we’re all visited Lidl and been stunned into over-buying by the immense value of their extensive cheese range… Many a cheese has been relegated to the bin after the mold starts creeping in.
If you know you’ve a weakness for cheese, and like to see some variety in your diet, make sure you plan your meals accordingly!
Websites like Yummly offer a huge range of recipes submitted by users, and you are able to search by ingredient. Even better, MoneySavingExpert.com have great meal planning resources to help you to reduce food waste in your kitchen, reduce the price of your weekly shop, and (most importantly) never bin a cheese again!
3. Remember, you can freeze it!
The best thing about cheese it that some types can be frozen with little impact on their taste or texture. Cheese like cheddar are best grated first, and then frozen into portions. Grated cheese defrosts very rapidly if left out of the freezer, or if you submerge the bag of grated cheese in room temperature water. Frozen cheese works well for pizzas, cheese sauces, toasties, and for your beans on toast.
Not all cheeses cope so well with freezing. Soft cheeses, in particular, are problematic. You can get some good advice here on what can and cannot be frozen.