Cheese is a versatile food item that can be eaten as snacks, appetizers, and even desserts! This is among the reasons why cheese is a staple in most homes. Some even shop for different kinds of cheese in bulk or packs. It also helps that cheeses are visually pleasing and can be a pretty addition in dinner or cocktail parties. However, it is not enough to have a variety of cheeses. One also has to know how to slice cheese properly since this food comes in different texture and sizes. Fortunately, learning the proper way of slicing cheese is quite easy.
There are different tools one can use to cut the cheese. The most common are the cheese slicer and cheese knife. Below are the basics of using both kitchen tools.
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How to Slice Soft Cheeses
Many people think that there is only one cheese knife. This, however, is not true since there are different cheese knives one must use depending on the kind of cheese and its texture. There are the cheese cleavers, cheese forks, and a cheese knife with holes.
Slicing Through Soft Cheeses
Soft cheeses such as double Crème and brie have interiors that are soft and tend to stick easily to the knife. One has to be careful and selective with the kind of knife to use with soft cheese as they will lose their shapes or end up being all over the knife’s blade.
The best knife to slice soft cheese is those with fragile and straight blades or cheese knives with holes. Those who do not have these kinds of knives can find a substitute, namely, a sharpened cook’s knife that has been dipped in boiling water and wiped dry.
Slicing Through Semi-Hard and Hard Cheese
There are plenty of hard and semi-hard cheeses on the market. These would include Manchego, young gouda or Comté. The best cheese knife to use for the hard and semi-hard ones is the cheese plane due to its razor-like blade, which can slice cheeses into thin pieces.
Unfortunately, not everyone is familiar with a cheese plane. This kitchen tool is basically a cheese grater that’s wide and used by hand. It is easy to use a cheese plane as one simply has to position the cheese into its thinnest side and place the cheese plane along the edge of the top side of the cheese. Users only need to drag the cheese plane and place t firmly and slowly across the entire cheese.
Slicing Through Hard and Firm Cheese Slices
There is another alternative to slicing hard cheeses since there ’s the cheese cleaver. This kind of cheese knife is also the best option to choose for slicing firm cheeses. Cheese cleavers can cut both hard and firm pieces of cheese into chunks or wedges.
The cleaver was designed to make decisive cheese cuts with its wide blade and sharp-edged tool. Its width is sufficient to slice across an entire block of cheese in a single motion.
Slicing Blocks of Cheese
Contrary to popular belief, slicing a block of cheese can be quite tricky. The trick is to hold it down using a cheese fork. Crumbling aged or hard cheeses can also be cut into smaller pieces using the cheese fork.
How to Slice Cheese Using A Cheese Slicer
A cheese knife is not the only way to cut the cheese. There is also the cheese slicer that comes in different designs and features. They are abundant in the market, too. One can choose a stand-alone, wired cheese slicer or slicer with an attached cutting board. What’s great about a cheese slicer is that it can be used to chop off all kinds of cheeses into a chunk efficiently and evenly. Fortunately, using a cheese slicer is easy regardless of the kind of slicer one has.
One has to take out the cheese from its plastic wrapper before using the cheese slicer on it. The cardinal rule to opening cheese is never to open the entire plastic wrapping and take the cheese out of it. The cheese has to be kept inside the plastic cover to keep it safe against oily substances, dust and other food particles that can stick to it.
The user has to hold the cheese slicer using his or her good hand. For example, if the cook is right-handed, then it is best to hold the slicer using the right hand while the other one holds down the cheese.
Some cheese slicers have an adjustable feature, which allows users to slice cheese according to their preferred thinness.
What many people fail to realize is that the thinness or thickness of a sliced cheese also matters depending on how the food item will be used. For example, sandwiches are better off having thick slices while cheeses that are to be served with wine and cold cuts are best sliced thinly.
The cheese slicer has to be appropriately positioned. This means that the kitchen tool has its sharp edge facing the cheese. Other cheese slicers have the blunt and cutting side. And as such, users have to ensure that the blunt side is facing them while the cutting side is facing the cheese. One can start with slicing the cheese after positioning the slicer properly.
Many people have different preferences when it comes to the thickness or thinness of the cheese. Fortunately, a test can be done first by creating a few slices of the cheese to know which thickness level is best for one’s needs and preference
Easy to Learn and Easy to Do
Cheeses are great tasting and versatile. They come in different kinds with varied shapes and texture but, unfortunately, can be quite difficult to slice. Using an incorrect kitchen tool or accessory to cut or slice cheese can lead to its ruin and wastage.
Fortunately, knowing how to slice cheese is easy to understand and learn. One only needs to be familiar with the different kinds of cheese knives and the variations of the cheese slicers. Understanding which slicing tool to use for a particular cheese will also be beneficial for those who want to make the most out of any cheese variant.