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     (4 weeks ago)       more like this  

    We're all familiar with the studies that came out bein' all, "CHEESE IS BASICALLY A NARCOTIC!" and everyone felt a little justified in our clammy-handed lactose-addled jonesin'. THEN it turned out maybe cheese isn't really tantamount to the nasal basil. No matter what causes us to fiend for cheese, you might as well feed that habit with the good stuff. Besides, we heard that stuff on the streets was cut with provel.. Best By: 08/20/2018

    Preparing Vella Cheese for Cooking
    When you cook with cheese, you typically will slice, shred, grate, or crumble the cheese before using it in your special recipes. Some of our cheeses are soft, like Toma, and other cheeses are very hard, like Golden Bear Dry Jack or Oro Secco. Here are some suggestions for preparing our cheeses:

    Hand Slicing Cheese - While you can hand-slice any of our cheeses, Toma, our softest, moistest cheese, should only be hand sliced. Try putting a block of Toma into the freezer for a half hour before slicing will firm it up a bit for more uniform slicing. But don't serve Toma too cold or you will lose grater/shreddersome of its delicious, creamy flavor.

    Shredding Cheese - The High Moisture Monterey Jack Cheeses, either original or naturally flavored, do well either sliced or shredded. You can use a hand shredder or simplify your work with the shredding blade of a food processor. If you leave the cheese at room temperature for an hour or so, it will be shredded cheeseeasier to shred.

    Many of our Dry Jacks, including Mezzo Secco, Romanello Dolce, and Dry Monterey Jack shred very nicely as do our Italian Style and Cheddar cheeses. Many of our cheeses are coated with yummy flavorings such as pepper and chocolate, so definitely include the coating when you shred the cheese.

    Grating Cheese - Our oldest, driest cheeses can be a challenge to shred. Grate them instead. Our aged dry cheeses: Oro Secco, Special Select and Golden Bear Dry Jack, and Habanero Dry Jack should all be grated into tiny pieces. You can do this with the grating side of a simple cheese grater, a box grater, or other specialty cheese grater of your choice (there are many to pick from). Like with shredding, you should include the flavorful coating as you grate. Grated cheese will be much finer than shredded cheese.

    Relating Cheese Weight to Volume
    Cheese is typically sold in blocks, wedges, or wheels-by weight. Recipes give volume measurements, like 1 cup.

    So, how do they relate?
    While each cheese may be different, we did a quick test.
    We hand-grated Monterey Dry Jack with a box grater until we weighed out ? lb. of? grated cheese.

    Yield: more than 1 ? cup of grated cheese.

    We then shredded and weighed out ? lb. of Monterey Dry Jack, using a (Kitchen Aid) food processor with this basic shredding blade.

    Yield: more than 1 ? cup of shredded cheese.

    In either case, you should grate or shred first, and measure second, as not every bit of your cheese will be processed.

    But those left over hunks sure are delicious!!

    Recipes
    Here are some recipes for you to enjoy. You can download all the recipes, and print them if desired:

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