Upping Your Cheese Game: Where To Start?

cheese platter
cheese platter

No matter what kind of special diet people are following nowadays, cheese holds a special place in the hearts of millions of people across the world. Some may be content with picking up a hunk of cheddar at the local supermarket and munching on a few slices.

For others, creating an attractive looking array of cheese can be an expression of one’s culinary prowess. Looking to up your cheese game? Here’s the place to start!

Be adventurous

See a cheese that you’ve never heard of before? Go ahead and give it a try! One of the fascinating things about cheese is just how many types there are. Food fairs or sample stations in markets are great places to taste new varieties and see what you like.

Make a cheese plate

Now that you have expanded your cheese horizons, assembling a cheese plate is the perfect way to start off a dinner party or an intimate get together with friends.

Remember that when we eat, we first eat with our eyes. A cheese plate should look appealing and inviting. You’ll also want to include various textures and flavors to delight your taste buds. It should call out to your guests, “I’m delicious! See what I have to offer!”

Don’t overlook a cheeses presentation

If you’re a fan of cooking competition shows, you know that presentation is crucial when it comes to first impressions. Here are some general tips:

1. Create volume. Don’t just have a flat plate, reach for the sky!

2. Use something fresh. This can include fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Have fun and experiment with new combinations.

3. Include 3 or more colors on the plate. Nothing is worse than a white plate full of grey food. Make it pop!

4. Don’t be afraid of empty space. Cramming everything together can make it look like a jumbled mess.

Up your overall culinary game

While cheese is certainly the star of the cheese plate, it is a fantastic addition to a meal as an appetizer or dessert. If you’re looking for more ways to become a boss in the kitchen, there are plenty of opportunities to learn more as seen here.

Technology really makes it easy to learn various skills from virtually anywhere you have an internet connection. Cheese is something we can use to elevate dishes and celebrate other ingredients. Incorporating other skills will allow you to unlock its full potential. 

Pair it up


Cheese is one of the most versatile ingredients out there because it goes so well with so many different things.

Everyone knows that cheese and wine are a match made in heaven. Whether it’s paired with a deep red like zinfandel or a sweet, summery rose, the flavors are sure to impress.

Go forth and eat cheese

Now that you’re armed with some more information, you can start to take the next steps on your journey to reach the pinnacle of the cheese world. Be sure to keep these ideas in mind as you go to different markets in search of new and delicious cheeses.

Visit the deli and talk with the staff behind the counter to see if they have any recommendations. If you follow the advice in this post, you will be upping your cheese game in no time!

QA7 – How Do I Label My Waxed Cheeses?

How To label Cheese - Cheese Labels

So you’ve made a great looking round of cheese and now it’s time to wax it.

But once it’s waxed and stored away for aging, how do you ever remember which cheese is which, when it was made and when it will be ready?

Obviously the answer is to label the cheese, but how?

Don’t worry cheese labels are extremely simple. Read more

Age Does Matter – Aging Homemade Cheese

Aging Cheese - How To Age Homemade Cheese

This post is Part 8 of the continued basic home cheese making instructions. See the Curd Nerd Beginner Page for previous parts.

It’s not always true what they say, that age doesn’t matter.

For cheese, it most certainly does.

Aging cheese (also known as ripening or maturing) is an important part of developing the signature of the particular cheese you are making. It allows time for millions of microbes and enzymes to do their thing, breaking down the proteins and fats into a complex combination of acids that influences how texture, taste and aroma are expressed in your chosen cheese.

A longer aging time causes a firmer, more intense cheese, whereas short aging times result in a more mild taste and a softer ‘paste’. Read more

Making Home Cheese Making Cheaper

Tips on homemade cheese molds, homemade cheese cloth and homemade cheese press ideas

When you first start home cheese making, it is easy to end up spending a lot of money on all the equipment you feel like you have to have to make great cheese. There are cultures and Rennet to buy, stockpots and thermometers, pH meters and curd knifes, cheese cloth and molds and a press for hard cheeses.

Plus the price of good milk alone can be quite frightening! Read more

Cheese Making Press – How To Press Cheese

Cheese Mkaing Press - How To Press Cheese

This post is Part 6 of the continued basic home cheese making instructions. See the Curd Nerd Beginner Page or the Basic Instructions category for previous parts.

Pressing your cheese is not only an important part of shaping the cheese but is also important in creating the texture and as part of the aging process.


What Cheese Needs Pressing

Soft cheeses need either no pressing, are pressed under their own weight or have minimal light weight applied to form the cheese.

Hard cheese on the other hand must be pressed and after your cheese has been through each of the steps to get to the point of having curds ready to turn into cheese, you need to apply enough weight in a way that will knit the curds, expel any extra whey and create the shape of your final product.

Read more

Using Saturated Brine Solution In Cheese Making

Using A Homemade Saturated Brine Solution In Cheese Making

Most cheese recipes require salt to be added, rubbed or soaked in at some stage in the cheese making process.

Salt is an important part of cheese making and has multiple purposes including assisting in drawing out whey, preserving the cheese and protection against undesirable moulds.

Read more

Cheddaring Process | Demonstrating How It’s Done

Cheddaring Of Cheese - The Cheddaring Process

In my last post, I suggested that Farmhouse Cheddar is worth giving a go as your first hard cheese attempt.

The  beauty of Farmhouse Cheddar is that it skips the Cheddaring part of making Traditional Cheddar and saves a lot of time, and complexity.

Because it can be difficult to understand what the whole Cheddaring step of making Traditional Cheddar is all about if you haven’t seen it, or done it I thought I would post the You Tube videos below which demonstrate the Stacking, Cheddaring and Milling process of making Traditional Cheddar. Read more

Cooking Cheese Curds Known As Scalding The Curds

Cooking Cheese Curds - Scalding Cheese Curds

This post is Part 5 of the continued basic home cheese making instructions. See the Curd Nerd Beginner page or the Basic Instructions category for previous parts.

With your curds all nicely cut and having had a 5 minute rest, for many recipes, the next step is to scald the curds.

Otherwise known as cooking the curds. Read more