Sadly, no cheese lasts forever.
Depending on whether it’s fresh ricotta, soft Camembert, semi-soft or semi-hard provolone, or hard Mimolette, cheese can last anywhere from one week to six weeks.
Of course, Culture recommends paying close attention to visual cues like unintended mold, cracks, sliminess, or discoloration, along with aromas of ammonia or sour tastes.
Luckily, cheese paper exists to slow down the process of decay. There’s only one question left — is it possible to reuse?
If you’ve ever brought home a hunk of cheese from your local fromagerie, you’ve probably noticed that it was covered in a peculiar wrapping paper.
Cheese Origin explains that the material protecting your cheese is made from wax-coated paper fused to a porous plastic.
Unlike plastic wrap, cheese paper blocks oxidizing light along with allowing airflow, which can prevent mold or dryness.
Since cheese is a living thing, the Cheese Month Club shares that it will continue to age.
It’s for this reason that wrapping wedges of cheese in breathable paper is vital. However, cheese paper can be expensive, which might have you considering whether or not it’s safe to reuse.
You can get a few uses out of cheese paper
The most magical of wrappings, cheese paper is one material that you definitely shouldn’t toss — at least, not immediately.
Regardless of whether you have your own endless supply of paper, you might be happy to know that it can actually be used again.
In order to get a few more uses from the cheese paper, Food & Wine suggests rinsing the paper and then leaving it to air dry before using it on future cheese.
In fact, the paper can be used to store hunks of dairy until you notice any oil staining, notes Formaticum.
But, if you’re looking to repurpose cheese paper elsewhere, it can also be used to wrap sandwiches.
That said, if you’re looking to totally eliminate waste, then there’s another option.
For the most sustainable choice, La Verde Oveja proposes beeswax wraps, as they allow the cheese to breathe like cheese paper, but are made to last. Say goodbye to poorly kept cheeses, forever!