Can You Freeze Cotija Cheese?
You can freeze cotija cheese for around 9 to 11 months at best quality without losing its flavor and texture if wrapped and stored properly in freezer-safe bags. However, the cotija cheese that is kept constantly frozen at 0 degrees centigrade can last indefinitely.
You can freeze cotija cheese by wrapping it in plastic wrap or wax paper, placing in a sealable bag, and pressing down on the air. You can freeze cotija cheese up to six months, making it easier to stock up on it if you know you are going to use it sooner than later. If you are going to keep your frozen cotija cheese in your freezer, the best thing to do is to wrap it up in plastic wrap, and then put it into a zipperlock bag. If you store cotija cheese in the freezer for 2 months, it is safe to eat it again, provided that you keep the container sealed.
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Once opened, make sure you wrap any shredded cotija cheese tightly and store in a refrigerator in a produce drawer so that it stays fresh, not icy. If you would like to eat the whole cheese at once, wrap it again in waxed paper or parchment paper and keep in a plastic container. Once you are done, and have wrapped all the cheeses in the parchment paper, place it into an airtight package. If you do not use up all of the cotijas in a single serving, then wrap it again in the parchment or wax paper and store in the plastic container or in a sealed plastic bag.
Keep your cotija wrapped in fresh parchment or waxed paper every time you use it, and then wrap in a plastic bag or container. If you shredded your tasty cotija, put it inside a sealed freezer bag with some cornstarch added. Transfer your delicious cotija from the freezer into your refrigerators vegetable drawer, making sure that the package stays sealed tight. Then, wrap sliced deli cheese in cling film, tie it up, and put the entire package into a freezer-safe bag or container.
If you keep Parmesan cheese in a sealed container or in a freezer bag, you will be able to store it frozen up to three months. If you want to skip that step and freeze your cheese, you need to know that it will lose moisture when it is frozen, and will not last as long. The other option is to simply freeze Cotija Cheese, but remember, it will not stay as moist as when frozen another way, and will lose moisture during freezing.
|Cotija cheese||Last for 2 months in the freezer|
|Aged cotija cheese||Last for up to 3 months|
|Fresh cotija cheese||Last for about a month|
Your cheese also needs to thaw before you can shave it, so if you are going to use an entire block of Cotija Cheese, remember that and freeze your cheese right before you intend on using it. The cheese can be frozen indefinitely, but it needs to be used within six to nine months to get the best quality. If you know that you are going to need the cotija cheese soon, then you may want to purchase it in bulk, or purchase large quantities, as it will keep frozen up to six months.
The effect on flavor will vary depending on how long you have been freezing Cotija, as well as the cheeses quality when originally packaged. The impact on texture will depend on how long it is frozen, with shorter freeze times yielding more crumbly products. Some texture loss can occur, but it will barely be noticed because of the crumbly nature of cotija.
When defrosted, cotija cheese may crumble, so it is best used in dishes where this texture would add dimension to a dish, like as a filling for tacos, enchiladas, or salads. Like parmesan, cotija is frequently grated into a dressing or seasoning for salads and other foods it compliments well. Cotija, like Parmesan, is often grated and used as a topping or condiment for salads and other foods.
Cotija is a semi-hard, slightly aged cheese that has a crumbly texture similar to parmesan, but has stronger, more savory flavors. Queso fresco or queso ranchero are two other Mexican cheeses that may attain similar textures to cotija. When fresh, cotija is extremely soft, similar in texture to cottage cheese, while aged cotija is firmer, with a much stronger flavor.
The bright, fresh nature of cotija works beautifully with traditional Mexican flavors; where you will find lime, cilantro, and corn, cotija makes other flavors pop. I love queso fresco the most on corn-on-the-cob dishes, such as elote, a popular Mexican food served with a smear of mayonnaise, some cotija, and a drizzle of Tajin seasoning.
If you are a Mexican food lover, you have almost certainly used or eaten seasoned cheese known as cotija. If you are as passionate about Mexican food as I am, then you may have encountered the Mexican cheese queso cotija, or handmade Mexican cheese, when dining out or following a recipe at home. You can also use cotija cheese to give more flavor in your favorite guacamole recipes, whether it is adding the cheese in the cooking process or mixing it in just a little after.
It is also recommended that you add some cornstarch into a leak-proof freezer bag to keep grated cheese from sticking. Mold can also form on cheese, which can be trimmed away if it is hard cheese, with the remaining pieces being usable.
You can then return the cheese to the refrigerator and allow to thaw fully, or use it in the recipes directly. Then, 2-3 hours before you want to use, remove your cheese from the refrigerator and allow to mellow at room temperature. You will have to remove your cheese from the fridge one evening before you want to use it, so be sure to plan ahead.
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The easiest way to break up the cotija is to put your desired quantity into a zipper-lock bag, then push down on the cheese within the bag until it breaks up and crumbles. The cojita cheese becomes dry, tough, and crumbly, meaning that it can be worse, but nonetheless, it is still safe to consume if you wish, but the texture and flavor will not be quite as good as the fresh stuff.
How long does cotija cheese last in the refrigerator?
After each usage, keep your cotija wrapped in new parchment or wax paper and place it inside a plastic bag or container. Fresh cotija will keep this way for about a month in the fridge, but aged cotija may last up to three months.
How do you use a lot of cotija cheese?
It goes particularly well with elote, a meal of smeared corn on the cob with mayonnaise, cotija, and Tajin flavor. You may use it as a layer on burgers, an addition to salads, or a garnish for your preferred chili recipe. There are several alternatives to cotija.
What cheese can you not freeze?
In general, delicately flavored and scented hand-crafted cheeses do not really freeze well and are best purchased in smaller quantities and consumed immediately. Due to their high water content, new curd cheeses like cottage cheese, ricotta, and quark are also not advised for freezing.