Ossau-Iraty may not be a well-known cheese, but this Basque jewel is on the list of our favorites, and we’re beyond any doubt that it’ll be your favorite cheese soon as well. Known as the grandpa of Basque cheeses, a few say that Ossau-Iraty was one of the primary intentioned-made cheeses in Europe, conceivably dating back to 3,000 BC!
This delicious cheese is made up of 100% sheep’s milk. Its color is ivory, and the outer skin is dry thick with light to dark orange-brownish in color. It is full of protein and calcium, thus very healthy for bones and teeth.
How to Store Ossau-Iraty Cheese
Ossau-Iraty is one of the famous and oldest cheeses in the world. People like to eat it, thus need to store it for a long time. If you have bought one of these cheeses, you might be wondering how you can store this cheese to make it last longer so that you can consume fresh and aromatic cheese whenever you want.
There are a few possible methods that we are going to discuss here; read through the article to know more about it.
Keep at Room Temperature
Semi-hard to dense Ossau-Iraty cheese can be stored at room temperature. Sometimes it exudes liquid, but do not worry, it is not spoiled. But this is the normal action of semi-hard cheese at room temperature. Ensure the room temperature is under 70 F; it will make your cheese last for one week to ten days.
Keep at Refrigerator
You can choose another method if you want to keep your cheese for more than ten days. And that method is to refrigerate your cheese. Make sure the temperature should be below 8 degrees. And kept in a plastic bag or wrapper.
You can also freeze it, but freezing makes the cheese very hard and thus not suitable to use for ready-to-eat. You need to thaw it first, or you can directly use it for cooking purposes. Frozen cheese can last for one year if kept at a constant temperature.
Use Wax Paper
Always wrap your Ossau-Iraty in a waxed paper, or you can also use baking parchment. Wax paper can hold it without getting stuck to it. Don’t forget to wrap your cheese in waxed paper before you are putting it in the fridge.
Can You Freeze Ossau-Iraty Cheese
Everything can increase its life if taken proper care of and, more importantly, frozen on time. Few kinds of cheese are not ideal for freezing, i.e., Ricotta Parmesan Romano Processed Cheese. But for Ossau-Iraty, the simple answer is, yes, you can freeze it to make its life longer than usual.
You can store it by freezing, but it will change its texture a bit. But don’t worry, it won’t affect the taste of this cheese. You can use it after thawing it, or you can directly use frozen cheese in cooking. Do not freeze and defrost it every time, as it can affect the taste and make it prone to get spoiled easily.
How Long Does Ossau-Iraty Cheese Last
Well, it is very important to know that how long a specific product can last, and what is its expiry date. But also, you would be wondering that how long does your Ossau-Iraty last. Well, it depends on certain circumstances in which the cheese is kept.
If you are keeping your cheese at room temperature, it cannot last more than 7 to 10 days. So, you must consume it within this time frame. However, if you want to make your cheese last longer than it is at room temperature, you should refrigerate your cheese. A refrigerated semi-hard cheese like your Ossau-Iraty can last up to three to four weeks in the refrigerator.
On the other hand, if you are keeping your cheese in frozen form, you should not have to worry about its spoilage almost for nine months, provided the temperature of the freezer is constant, and cheese is wrapped properly.
How To Tell If Ossau-Iraty Cheese Is Bad
Like every other food product, cheese also gets worse when it reaches its expiry date. If you are storing your Ossau-Iraty, you must know when and how you can understand if your cheese is gone bad or still well to use.
There are few indications that we are going to tell you; let us have a look.
- Color: It is common that if your Ossau-Iraty is going to be bad, it will indicate changing its color from its original form to darker and eventually blackish.
- Texture: The spoiled cheese shows the deterioration in its texture. Like your, Ossau-Iraty is a semi-hard cheese, but when it is spoiled, it will become dehydrated and harder.
- Mold: The mold growth is also a clear indication of your cheese getting bad.
- Smell: Use your sense of smell; the rotten cheese possesses a pungent smell.