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Grating Cheese

Grating cheese is simple, right? You just pull out the old box grater and work your arm up and down until your four-ounce pile is ready to go. Use these tips to make your grating experience easier next time.

Make cleanup easier with these tips:

  • Place your cheese grater in the freezer for several minutes before you start grating. The cheese won't stick to cold metal. If you don't have time to place it into the freezer, then running it under cold water will work, too, but be sure to dry the grater completely before grating.
  • Brush a little cooking oil on the grater before using it, and that will make cleaning up easier when you're finished.
  • Do you find that a green scrubby doesn't quite do the job when you're cleaning your grater? Keep an old toothbrush next to the sink and use it to scrub off any cheese that clogs the grater holes.

Can't find your cheese grater? In a pinch you can use a strong, four-pronged fork as a cheese grater. Hold the cheese tightly in one hand and scrape away at it with the fork. You'll end up with even little strips just like the ones that come from your grater.

Have you ever skinned your knuckles while grating too vigorously or trying to grate a very small piece of cheese? (I actually have a scar!) Use a hand-held cheese grater with a drum and turning crank (like the ones you've seen servers use at the restaurant Olive Garden, if you've eaten there before) to avoid cutting up your hands. Pampered Chef sells a great model, but you can also find crank graters at most home stores.

Small cubes of Parmesan and other hard cheeses grate well in a blender or food processor if you place them in and put the machine on "pulse" for a few seconds.

Did you know you can freeze grated cheese? Just put it in an airtight freezer bag and force out as much of the air as you can before putting the bag in the freezer. Allow it to defrost in the refrigerator when you're ready to use it. This is a great trick to use if you buy pre-grated cheese in big bags from price clubs and don't want any of it to go moldy before you can use it.

 

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