Tips for Cheese Grating

by Travis Loncar on November 10, 2011


Gourmet cheese comes in many forms – we all know that. From sliced cubes of Stella Asiago to a blend of cheeses melted into a tasty fondue, cheese never lets our taste buds down. One way that we (and probably the rest of you) love to eat cheese is grated. Fresh grated cheese is truly amazing – whether you buy it in a store or make it at home. It’s a terrific topping for salads, soups, pastas, what have you. I can almost taste the grated Parmesan melting into a bowl of Tomato Soup. Yum.

tomato-soup-with-grated-cheese

Source: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/

On Tuesday, we discussed how to store cheese properly. Part of that post referenced the possibility (and ultimate likelihood) for cheese to harden over time. Interestingly enough, grating cheeses that have hardened (or are naturally hard) is THE alternative to pitching them to the raccoons. While there are plenty of great brands of grated cheese commercially available, you may prefer to do the grating yourself. In fact, we love home-grated cheese, as it tends to be marginally fresher than the stuff you can buy in a store. Today, we’ll give you a few quick tips for cheese grating at home.

A Grater is Greatest!

The easiest and most efficient way to grate your own cheese is by using a cheese grater. Any functional grater will do just fine – there’s no need to go out and buy anything fancy. If you don’t have access to a grater, you can purchase one from our selection of helpful kitchen gadgets or ask a friend to borrow theirs! The grating process itself is pretty self-explanatory. As we mentioned previously, the firmer the cheese you use, the better suited it is for grating. We recommend something like Parmesan or aged Asiago. Also, a theme among commercial brands of grated cheese is blending multiple types. Don’t be afraid to mix and match flavors as you see fit!

cheese-grating

Source: http://www.myhomecooking.net/

Anyways, back to the grating. Grab your hunk of cheese in one hand, your grater in the other, and run the cheese up and down across the grater. If you’re saving the cheese for later, you’ll want to make sure that you’re grating overtop of a bowl – unless, of course, you want a huge mess! If some cheese escapes the bowl (and ends up on the ground), don’t fret; that’s what overfed domestic animals (or animate vacuums) are for! If you’re making a large salad, there’s certainly nothing wrong with grating the cheese directly into the salad bowl. If it’s safe and saves you time, we’re all for it!

Alternative Methods – Grateful for Graters?

Believe it or not, there are other (perhaps less appealing) ways to grate your cheese at home. One method is the recursive slicing of the cheese with a cheese knife. While this is probably as painstaking as it sounds, it is something that’s practiced from time to time. Again, if you can use a grater, use a grater! We liken using a knife in place of a grater when grating cheese to using scissors instead of a lawn mower when cutting grass. It just isn’t efficient! Another option (which is probably preferable to hand cutting large blocks of cheese into minuscule slivers) is using a blender. The essential step in using a blender to grate cheese is coating the blades with non-stick cooking oil or spray. This prevents the cheese (which you blend in small batches of cubes) from gumming up once grated. Sounds kinda messy, though, doesn’t it?

cheddar-cheese

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Our advice? Stick to using a cheese grater! It makes the process more effective, efficient, and most importantly, enjoyable! Do you have any tips on cheese grating that you’d like to share? Have you had any good or bad experiences trying some other techniques? Let us know!

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