A cheese lover’s paradise, blue cheese is an exquisite pairing with wine.
It’s a decadent, luxurious treat that’s both delicious and beautiful.
But when it comes to storing your prized possession, there are certain things you need to know.
What is blue cheese?
Blue cheese was born out of necessity, as the name suggests.
When cows were first introduced to Europe, they were fed hay instead of grass.
This made them sick, making it difficult to produce milk.
To solve this problem, people started using moldy bread to feed them instead.
The moldy bread caused the milk to ferment and turn into a yellow-green liquid called “curds.”
This curdled milk was then heated until it became solid and formed into blocks that resembled the color of blue cheese.
To make blue cheese, these curds are mixed with salt and left to sit for between 24 and 72 hours.
After this time, the cheese is cut into cubes and pressed together before being placed in large vats where it sits for another two to three days.
Once it has had enough time to settle, the blue cheese is removed from its vat and set aside to cure.
There are many different varieties of blue cheese on the market today, each one boasting their own unique flavors and textures.
Some are smooth, others have a crumbly texture, yet others are firm and dense.
They all differ in how long they take to mature and how much salt they contain.
Some blue cheeses are very salty, some are milder, and others are sweet.
These cheeses are typically aged for anywhere from four months to two years or more.
By the end of this process, the cheese will have a strong, sharp flavor that will last for several weeks after opening.
What is mold?
Mold is an organism that lives in a variety of places including soil, decaying vegetation, and even inside our bodies.
These organisms feed on dead organic material, which is why they thrive in damp environments.
They grow in colonies, which makes them hard to spot unless they start growing out of control.
If you think mold looks like a fuzzy green or black substance, you might be surprised to learn that some types of mold are actually edible.
The most common type of mold you find in stores is Penicillium, but there are many other types of molds that exist.
Some of these include Aspergillus, Cladosporium, Fusarium, Geotrichum, Mucor, Rhizopus, and Stachybotrys.
The different types of mold affect the food we eat differently.
For example, aspergillus produces mycotoxins (poisonous compounds), which are harmful to humans, animals, and plants.
There are also several types of molds that produce toxins that are harmful to us specifically.
In fact, these toxins can cause severe allergic reactions in people who have been sensitized to them.
You may have heard of trichinae, which is a parasite that causes trichinosis.
This disease is spread by eating raw or undercooked foods containing pork, beef, or horse meat infected with the larvae of the parasitic roundworm Trichinella spiralis.
Other types of molds that affect human health include Aspergillus flavus, which can produce aflatoxin, and Penicillium, which can produce ochratoxin A.
While mold can be found everywhere, it can be especially problematic in humid areas, such as basements, kitchens, and bathrooms.
Mold spores can live outside the body indefinitely, but they tend to flourish indoors once water has penetrated the surface of any building materials.
How does blue cheese get its color?
Blue cheese doesn’t just come in one flavor – there are dozens of varieties from around the world.
Some are milder than others, but all have a distinctive flavor that makes them unique.
The color of blue cheese isn’t as simple as “it’s made of cow poop,” though that’s certainly part of it.
While many varieties of blue cheese contain blue mold, which gives it its characteristic color and taste, some do not.
For instance, Stilton is a British blue cheese that has no blue mold at all, making it lighter in color and less pungent.
The color comes from two different sources.
First, blue mold produces an enzyme called penicilloyl G, which turns milk proteins into a reddish-brown pigment known as tyrosine.
This helps give blue cheese it’s signature blue hue.
Second, blue mold produces a substance called 2-phenylethyl-4-(1-hydroxyethyl) hydantoin (PEHH), which gives blue cheese it’s characteristic smell and taste.
While most blue cheese contains blue mold, other types of cheese may have similar coloring agents.
For example, Roquefort is another French blue cheese that has been known to use PEHH, although it hasn’t been detected in recent years.
If you find yourself wondering whether or not your blue cheese contains mold, you can always ask a cheese expert.
Most will be able to tell you without even tasting the cheese.
And speaking of tasting, let’s talk about how to store your blue cheese properly.
You wouldn’t want to risk having your precious cheese go bad before you finish your dinner party, would you?
Does blue cheese have mold in it?
To answer this question, we’ll first look at what exactly blue cheese is made from.
If you’ve ever eaten blue cheese before, you probably know that it’s usually made out of cow or goat milk.
The main ingredient is usually blue mould called Penicillium Roqueforti (or simply Roquefort).
This microbe is a type of fungus that produces a blue-green mold that grows on the surface of the cheese.
When the cheese is set, the mold is pressed into the rind, giving it its distinctive blue color.
But why would anyone want to make blue cheese?
Well, it’s because of how great it tastes.
Unlike other types of cheese, like cheddar, blue cheese doesn’t contain much fat, but rather consists mainly of protein and salt.
Because of this, blue cheese has a higher moisture content than other types of cheese.
As a result, blue cheese is more prone to spoilage, which is why you should always store it properly.
How can you tell if blue cheese has gone bad?
There are several factors that can affect the quality of your favorite blue cheese.
The main one being time.
The longer your blue cheese sits around, the more likely it is to go bad.
That said, it takes only a few days before blue cheese starts to show its age.
This is because most blue cheeses are made from raw milk, which means that it contains a lot of bacteria.
While it’s a good thing that these bacteria produce lactic acid, which gives blue cheese its tangy flavor, they can also cause spoilage.
The bacteria that causes this spoiling process is called Listeria monocytogenes (LM), and it’s very dangerous.
The best way to prevent LM from growing is by keeping your blue cheese refrigerated at all times.
If you want to get a sense of how long your blue cheese has been sitting around, take a look at the bottom of the container.
If it looks like there’s any liquid at the bottom, it’s too old and should be discarded.
In order to keep your blue cheese safe, store it in the fridge or freezer until you’re ready to use it.
And don’t forget to clean your blue cheese storage containers thoroughly after every use.
If you think your blue cheese might be spoiled, taste it right away.
If it tastes foul, throw it out immediately.
If you can smell something off, however, it may still be okay.
To test it yourself, place a small amount of blue cheese into a glass of water.
Let it sit for about 30 minutes, then taste it.
If it doesn’t taste good, discard it immediately.
How should you store blue cheese?
Blue cheese has been around since the time of ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome.
The earliest known recipes call for blue cheese made from goat’s milk, which was thought to have healing properties.
In fact, blue cheese was used as a remedy for various ailments, including toothaches and rheumatism.
Today, blue cheese is still considered an aphrodisiac.
In fact, it’s one of the most expensive cheeses in the world, costing about $20 per pound.
A pound of blue cheese contains between 4-8 ounces, depending on its age and type.
And while blue cheese is incredibly tasty on its own, it’s also incredibly dangerous.
If left out at room temperature, blue cheese will start to grow mold within 24 hours.
This bacteria will then begin to permeate the cheese and cause it to go bad much faster than normal.
So how do you prevent this from happening?
What are some recipes that include blue cheese?
Blue cheese is a creamy, tangy, salty delight.
It’s an absolute must-have in any cheese-loving household.
While it’s easy to find in stores, most of us don’t really know how to store our blue cheese properly.
If you’ve purchased this lovely treat, you may want to reconsider your storage methods because even the best blue cheese can be ruined by improper storage.
Keep reading to learn more about what goes into making blue cheese and how to store it appropriately.
What does “blue” mean?
You’ll see a lot of different names for blue cheese, but none of them are wrong.
The name “blue” refers to the color of the cheese, but the color isn’t a flavor.
It doesn’t taste like blueberry or lavender.
Instead, the color comes from the addition of a culture called Penicillium roqueforti.
When the cheese is made, it’s placed in a blue vat and left to ferment.
During this process, the bacteria produce a pigment called mycelium.
This is what gives the cheese its blue color.
As the cheese sits in the blue vat, it starts to develop flavors.
That’s why blue cheese has such a distinct flavor profile.
It’s usually described as having a sharp, pungent, and fruity quality.
You can get a similar flavor profile by adding a little bit of blueberry juice to your favorite white cheddar cheese.
The two will make a great combination!
How do I store my blue cheese?
If you’ve bought a blue cheese, you should keep it refrigerated at all times.
Not only is it important to keep it cold, but blue cheese needs to be kept away from other cheeses.
If you have several different cheeses in your fridge, try to keep your blue cheese separate from them.
Blue cheese can easily start to spoil due to exposure to light and air, which causes it to lose moisture and become less flavorful.
Storing it in the refrigerator is the best option if you plan to use it within a few days.
But what happens if you buy blue cheese and want to keep it longer than a week?
Well, you can still enjoy it.
Just take it out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature until it reaches room temperature again before putting it back in the fridge.
As long as you follow these simple steps, your blue cheese will last just fine.
How can you make your own blue cheese?
Blue cheese is made by inoculating a fresh cow or goat milk product (typically from one cow) with Penicillium roqueforti, a very common type of fungus found in soil.
The fungi then grow and ferment the milk until it turns into blue-colored cheese.
Afterward, it’s washed with salt and dried before being packaged and sold.
What are some interesting facts about blue cheese?
Blue cheese is actually a type of soft cheese made from cow’s milk or goat’s milk.
The most common types include Roquefort, Gorgonzola, Stilton, Brie, and Camembert.
While all these cheeses originated in different areas around Europe, they share one thing in common: they’re all made from unpasteurized (or raw) milk.
This means they don’t undergo any heat treatment before being put into the form of cheese, and they’re therefore naturally more susceptible to bacterial growth.
In fact, blue cheeses contain high levels of lactic acid bacteria, which can cause off-flavors and spoilage over time.
And this is why they must be kept in cool, dark conditions to prevent them from developing harmful bacteria.
So how do you keep your blue cheese safe?
Here are some tips for storage that will ensure your prized possession stays fresh and delicious forever!