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General Cooking Tips
- Be sure to cook any cheese at a low temperature and for a short period of time, otherwise it may separate or become tough or stringy.
- Grate hard cheese so it will melt easily.
- Shred or cut soft cheese into cubes for grilling, baking or adding to sauces.
- Add cheese at the end of cooking and heat gently for just as long as it takes to melt.
- The younger the cheese, the better it will melt.
- The older the cheese, the fuller the flavor.
- The older the cheese, the fuller the flavor and less is required when cooking.
- Exposure to high heat or extended cooking time toughens the cheese and causes to the oils to separate.
- When cheese is added to a liquid, such as sauces, never allow the mixture to boil after adding the cheese.
- The higher the fat content of a cheese, the lower the melting temperature.
Small tiny white crystals on the surface of a cheese (like those on our Mainland Vintage Cheddar) are considered a sign of quality matured cheese. These crystals are calcium lactate and are found more commonly in hard cheeses that have matured for a long period of time. These crystals are formed when the cheese loses or pushes out moisture as it ages. This causes the calcium lactate to become more concentrated, thus forming crystals. There are no health risks associated with eating the crystals – they are completely natural!
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