cheese

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irrationalsolutions
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cheese

Post by irrationalsolutions » Tue Nov 18, 2008 2:25 am

i do a pretty simple menu while out but the wife was asking me about cheese. can you take cheese on the trail without a cooler? and if so how long will it last?

she was wondering about cheddar.
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Pure Mahem
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Re: cheese

Post by Pure Mahem » Tue Nov 18, 2008 3:35 am

Lasts indefinately if it's that powdered cheddar packet from the blue box. Hahahahahahahaha I'm full of them this morning! Seriously I don't really know. :mrgreen:

Just got to thinking.... as long as you keep it dry you should be able to keep it indefinately any how after all they age cheeses for years on end. Just cut off the moldy part and eat the good stuff. But I'm not brave enough to take my own advice so take it as you will. :lol:
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Ridgerunner
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Re: cheese

Post by Ridgerunner » Tue Nov 18, 2008 7:28 am

IRA, hard cheeses such as cheddar will last maybe up to a week on the trail.(esp. in moderate temps) In extremely warm temps, it will not last as long.
PM, your right about the mold. I use to buy bricks of cheddar and colby @ Kroger, for almost nothing because they couldn't sell them to the public. Just slice the outer layer off and your good to go. Years ago they use to age beef by hanging it in the barn and after so long it would get nasty on the outside but once they sliced that part off, the inside was as tender as can be, so I was told. ;)
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sarbar
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Re: cheese

Post by sarbar » Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:26 pm

Buy the best you can get (ie...real cheese!). Then with disposable gloves on and a clean kitchen scale, cut 1-ounce chunks. Then dip in melted paraffin. Keep dipping a couple times. (Harden, dip, harden, dip and on)
You will have relatively shelf stable cheese at that point. I kid not!

Real cheese (not stuff passed off as cheese) was designed to last. Think of it like this: most cheese outside of the US is cured, sitting on shelves. And they have been making it that way for a LONG time.

What makes cheese go bad is getting your grubby hands all over it - kind of like how E-Coli gets spread in meat - large surface area is ok, but once you start shredding it, it is easy for the bacteria to get in. So handle the cheese once, and do it in a clean kitchen. Sterile tools and clean, wrapped hands.

You can also get cheddar cheese in 1-ounce sticks similar to string cheese as well. They carry fine for a couple days. The worst in most cases is that cheese gets soft from the oil relaxing.

Don't carry soft cheese unless you are eating it in 24 hours, same with cream cheese. In winter though you can carry quite a bit for long periods. Also, don't carry pre-shredded cheese unless it is a sealed bag and you will eat it all in one sitting. Like gorp, once you jam your filthy hands in the bag it is a goner.....
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Ridgerunner
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Re: cheese

Post by Ridgerunner » Thu Nov 20, 2008 7:28 pm

Good words of wisdom, Sabar. I never thought of dipping cheese in parafin. Great idea ! Kind of like some of the cheeses you buy that come with the heavy plastic coating. ;) I will have to use that one for sure. ;)
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sarbar
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Re: cheese

Post by sarbar » Fri Nov 21, 2008 7:13 pm

And you can burn the wax in camp after eating the cheese :D
Certain cheese like Baby Bels still come wrapped in wax btw!
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DaddyMnM
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Re: cheese

Post by DaddyMnM » Sat Nov 22, 2008 12:28 am

Sarbar,
These are excellent tips as usual. Do you know of a food grade wax? I would think bee's wax might be less likely to affect the flavor but may not stand as high a temperature as paraffin. I like those little red baby bel's, but they are too soft to last long outside cold storage. Maybe I should save their wax for reuse?

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Re: cheese

Post by sarbar » Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:49 am

While I know Paraffin isn't the greatest choice it is considered food grade. If you did go with beeswax be sure it is filtered (ie..melted and clarified).
I would suspect that it would work just fine (and hey honey in itself is a great preservation item!)
You have me wanting to try this out......now to see if I can find my stash of old beeswax candles!
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Re: cheese

Post by hoz » Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:06 am

I have carried sharp cheddar wrapped in cheesecloth dipped in vinegar 3 weeks in the bush with no harm. The vinegar keeps any mold to a minimum and the cheesecloth soaks up any "leakage" that may occur.

I also carry Gouda but usually have it first off, within 2-3 days. Asiago or Parmisano will last indefinitely as long as it's kept cool and dry.

On canoe trips I always have at least a pound of cheese per week. Makes those lunch stops so nice.

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Re: cheese

Post by brooklynkayak » Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:29 am

sarbar wrote:If you did go with beeswax be sure it is filtered (ie..melted and clarified).!
I don't recommend anything containing beeswax, honey or any bee product. Bears are supposed to smell that stuff several miles away.

Unless of course you never camp anywhere near bear country.

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