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dehydrating cheese?

Topics for discussing dehydration, drying, and smoking as methods for food preservation

dehydrating cheese?

Postby DianaMT » Sun Apr 25, 2010 12:12 am

I thought about dehydrating potatoes for scallop potatoes, but I am more of an au gratin person ;-) So I googled dehydrating cheese, as I use cheese for may things:
http://www.ehow.com/how_4885626_dehydra ... orage.html

Has anyone done this?

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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby mmpaints » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:33 am

Hey Diana, look simple enough eh? I've never tried this, the fresh cheese I make never makes it long enough before it is all eaten. I'll give it a whirl if I can, waxing it and food saver sealing it doesnt work......
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby ReadyMom » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:57 am

I would think that grated would be best, yes? Also ... I'm thinking this wouldn't be too good on a sandwich, unless you are making a grilled cheese. I'm going to look around on the net and see if I can find anything else ..... Image
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby ReadyMom » Sun Apr 25, 2010 11:15 am

Looking into this further, there are both 'yes' and 'no' to do this. It seems quite a number of folks are saying that it is NOT safe to dehydrate cheese, on your own:

NO! Info found here:

Dehydrating Cheese
http://mrssurvival.com/forums/lofiversi ... 36111.html

Is it possible to dehydrate cheese?
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index ... 203AAPZXjQ

YES! Info found here:

How Do You Dehydrate Cheese For Food Storage?

http://www.experts123.com/q/how-do-you- ... orage.html

Dehydrating Cheese
http://like-a-thief-in-the-night.blogsp ... heese.html

There is NOT a lot of info out there for dehydrating cheese. One of the concerns I have is the fat content in cheese. We have to be careful of food going rancid. Woudn't there be a chance of that, if this is not done properly? I think I would rather dehydrate fruits and veggies and then use my saved money (from doing those) to purchase factory-safe processed dehydrated or freeze dried dairy products for long term storage. Better safe than sorry, if you can't get to a hospital for eating rancid food! :'(
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby Austeria » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:39 pm

I've tried dehydrating cheese several times and it's seriously disgusting. Of course, if you really like dried out cheese, like the stuff along the edges of Kraft singles that have been left uncovered in the refrigerator overnight, you might like it, but I sure didn't. I couldn't find any way of rehydrating it that would make it taste like cheese. It remained crusty or totally liquified, but not in a good way (watery, rather than creamy). IMO, if you want to store cheese on the shelf, you're better off with dried cheese powder.

edited to add: ReadyMom, it does go rancid, as anything with fat will. Rancidity isn't toxic, but it sure ain't good eats!
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby mmpaints » Mon Apr 26, 2010 8:53 am

So, it seems then, the best solution for the homesteader type folk would be freeze dried direct set culture and powdered rennet and just make cheese when you want some........
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby DianaMT » Mon Apr 26, 2010 11:46 am

Thanks Ladies for the great information you provided. I will look into buying the cheese powder. I hadn't planned on using the dehydrated cheese as a daily meal. I also didn't plan on using the dehydrated potatoes as a daily meal. Just to have on hand.

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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby TheLight » Mon Apr 26, 2010 12:43 pm

Theory:
You dehydrate to remove water with the end goal being food preservation, right?
If you're making jerky you have to use lean meat as the fat will spoil.
So it would follow that, since cheese is mostly fat, it would be very difficult to dry and that even if you did, it would still spoil in short order. no?
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby Austeria » Mon Apr 26, 2010 2:23 pm

TheLight wrote:Theory:
You dehydrate to remove water with the end goal being food preservation, right?
If you're making jerky you have to use lean meat as the fat will spoil.
So it would follow that, since cheese is mostly fat, it would be very difficult to dry and that even if you did, it would still spoil in short order. no?

It will last about as long as home-rendered lard (the storebought kind has preservatives in it, so it lasts longer). It might be good for 6 months, if you're lucky. Still, rancidity isn't poisonous, just nasty-tasting and smelling. If you had to, you could still eat it.

The biggest problem with dehydrating cheese is that it won't REhydrate. It's nasty stuff, even if you start with good-quality cheese. Consider Kraft parmesan cheese. It adds some flavor to foods, although much stronger than fresh parmesan. It never melts and you can't soften it by adding water or anything else. That kind of demonstrates the problems with dehydrating cheese. You can't use it in any of the traditional ways. It won't even work if you powder it and try to use it like the cheese powders.
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby Betho » Tue Oct 12, 2010 1:23 am

For what it's worth, if you are thinking about having dried cheese just to have in your food stores, I have tried the freeze-dried cheese shreds at Emergency Essentials and I liked them quite a bit. I wouldn't use them to snack on or anything, but rehydrated and then drained & patted dry they made a good topper for casseroles when I was trying them out, good flavor and they melted almost like normal cheese. They are expensive though and so I only opened the can to test them and the rest is in the long-term storage. I have also made my own cheese and I think that's a key, knowing how to make it. Did you know that stinging nettle can serve in place of rennet?
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Re: dehydrating cheese?

Postby Tinga » Sun Oct 17, 2010 2:14 pm

What about macaroni and cheese..? Isn't that cheese the same as the powdered stuff that you pay out the nose for??
I've been guilty of filching the powdered cheese packets leaving an empty box of noodles. BUT.. separate the two and you have noodles AND powdered cheese for quite cheap.
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