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Old 01-18-2003, 08:04 PM
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Can you freeze a block of Parmesan cheese?

I stocked up on a couple blocks of parmesan cheese and wonder if I can toss them in my freezer for longer term storage without ruining the cheese? Would it make any difference I I shredded the cheese first? Thanks
Old 01-18-2003, 08:10 PM
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You're actuall supposed to store parmesan in the warmest part of the fridge. Freezing will destroy its flavor and consistency. Don't shred it and keep it wrapped.
Old 01-18-2003, 08:18 PM
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While I think the consistency of the cheese might be changed by freezing, I doubt the flavor will suffer.

I find differences of opinions on line. A hunk of parmesan will keep for a l-o-n-g time in the fridge. Why freeze it?
Old 01-19-2003, 03:36 AM
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I've frozen part of a block and found that it didn't suffer any more in flavor and texture than other foodstuffs. Not as good as fresh, but better than not having any (or having to resort to that pre-grated troll booger product in the green can).
Old 01-19-2003, 03:50 AM
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I know that Romano cheese freezes fine for a few months.
Old 01-19-2003, 06:14 AM
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Freezing Parmesan may change its texture. Thing with parmesan is that it is a low-moisture cheese, and it keeps remarkably well if it's kept in air-tight packaging in your refrigerator. It should be fine for several months.
Old 01-19-2003, 12:20 PM
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Could you maybe store it in oil? I don't know how, say, olive oil would react with the flavour of the cheese, but I'm thinking it might be tasty.

Alternativly, could you find a place that would ship some cheese to you? You know one of those fancy schmancy gourmet food catalogues
Old 01-19-2003, 12:56 PM
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From Keeping Food Fresh by Janet Bailey, © 1985 (now out of print), p. 154:
Freezing cheese is possible, but not without some sacrifice of quality....The chesses that freeze most successfully are brick, Camembert, Cheddar, Edam, mozzarella, Muenster, Parmesan, Port du Salut, provolone, Romano, and Swiss.

To freeze cheese, double-wrap chunks no larger than 1/2 pound in plastic or heavy-duty foil and seal airtight. Cheese keeps well up to six months at 0° F.
However, specifically in regard to hard cheeses, she adds (p. 161):
Refrigerate hard cheeses lightly wrapped and they should keep several months.

Because they are so long-lived, there is really no need to freeze these cheeses unless you want to avoid the stronger flavor and drier texture that develps during long storage. Hard cheeses do come through freezing relatively unchanged.
Old 01-20-2003, 01:41 AM
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thanks all for the answers. Reason I'm thinking about freezing is because I have more room in the freezer than the fridge.
Old 01-21-2003, 07:13 AM
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I must add that I disagree with Janet Bailey (quoted by earthling), when she claims that 'hard cheeses do come through freezing relatively unchanged.'

In my experiance the taste remains, but the cheese becomes very crumbly. I'm a great fan of strong cheddar, and I had a chunk that froze over Christmas. The taste is perfect, but it doesn't slice very easily.

Back to the OP though. What I do is to shred the Parmesan, and freeze in small plastic bags. As long as it's frozen it's very easy to sprinkle on foodstuff!

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