You have cooked pasta with a delicious Bolognese sauce and are looking forward to freshly shaved or grated Parmesan – and then discover mold on the hard cheese. What to do? Throw away? No, that doesn’t have to be the case: If parmesan becomes moldy on the surface, there is a simple solution. With the right storage, you can also ensure that mold does not form so quickly. However, a distinction must be made between a piece of cheese and already grated Parmesan.
How can you spot mold on Parmesan?
A piece of parmesan with white spots or spots is nothing to worry about: these are not white mold on the cheese, but salt crystals. The Parmesan is then safe to eat. The situation is different with greenish or blue mold, which should not be eaten under any circumstances. If you’re unsure, there’s a trick: wash the cheese – the salt crystals will come off, but mold won’t.
What to do if the Parmesan is moldy?
Since parmesan is a hard cheese, you can trim away any mold. To do this, remove the affected area generously with a knife. However, only if it is a smaller area and superficial mold or if the Parmesan is moldy on the edge. If several areas are already affected, the spores may have already spread inside, even if this is not yet visible. In this case – and the case of doubt – the good piece should rather be thrown away.
The same goes for mold on grated parmesan. It offers the spores a larger attack surface and molds faster. The toxic mold also spreads more easily. If the greenish-bluish fur shows up here, the cheese belongs in the garbage.
How long does Parmesan keep?
Parmesan has a very long shelf life: it can be sealed for between seven and nine months. The best-before date (MHD) on the packaging reveals more details. If you buy it at the deli counter or take it out of the packaging, the hard cheese will keep for around three to six weeks. Grated Parmesan has a shelf life of about three weeks – you should eat it relatively quickly.
Why Does Parmesan Go Moldy and How Should You Store It?
Mold usually forms on Parmesan cheese due to incorrect storage. For the cheese to last as long as possible, it should be protected from moisture.
Tips for storing Parmesan properly:
- Storage in the refrigerator at around four to seven degrees Celsius is ideal.
- So that the piece of cheese does not sweat, it should be stored dry and be able to breathe – this is suitable for example
- Paper from the cheese counter (just ask for a few sheets),
- kitchen roll,
- a cotton or linen cloth or
- a storage jar made of glass.
If you like, you can also store the cheese on a layer of salt or rice in a glass container – both absorb moisture so that no mold can form. Under no circumstances should Parmesan be wrapped in cling film, as this makes it easy to mold.
Can you freeze parmesan?
Although the hard cheese could lose its taste, and become dry and crumbly. However, freezing is possible: To do this, place the Parmesan in a freezer bag and press out all the air or, even better, vacuum it. In this way, the cheese can be preserved for up to 18 months without the parmesan going moldy.