I bought a pound and a half of 2%-milk based cheddar cheese. AMA!
November 25, 2018 7:22 AM   Subscribe

I went to the supermarket to buy cheddar cheese, it was on sale, the 2% version looks nearly identical to the full-fat version. I bought two packages. I came home and was distraught, wanting all the fat I am entitled to, so I went back to the supermarket, and bought eight more ounces. Of a 2% version.

I'm not going to take it back, because I am lazy.

I'm wondering if it isn't as bad as I think it is. It seemed rubbery with a weird aftertaste, but maybe I'm just biased about lower fat items and it's my imagination? Is there a preparation method (melting, incorporating into mashed potatoes, etc.) that will allow me to use this without flinching--or--is it not really as bad as I think it is, and it's just my aversion to 'reduced fat/calorie' products as 'less than' their full-fat counterparts?

It's this one. I also bought the Vermont style.
posted by A Terrible Llama to Food & Drink (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
(AMA?) ok, how much do you plan to freeze.

Not my favorite but makes a decent grilled cheese, use a bit of spices. While it is possible to freeze cheese, not necessary, put unopened in the back of the fridge, it actually improves with age.
posted by sammyo at 7:26 AM on November 25, 2018

If you make GC or other dishes with plenty of butter, you’re essentially restoring the missing milk fat.

I would use it to make cheddar roux, again the butter adds back the magic. One great use of cheddar roux is Mac-n-cheese, but there’s tons of possibilities, including cheese soups, etc.
posted by SaltySalticid at 7:29 AM on November 25, 2018 [4 favorites]

Oh yes, a cube of this, a cube of butter and just a bit of broccoli would make a fine soup!
posted by sammyo at 7:32 AM on November 25, 2018 [4 favorites]

Ooh, I fell into that trap this holiday with cream cheese, I breezed by the cold case and just grabbed a brick and didn't find out until I was home that it was "20% less fat!" and there was no way I was going back to the store on the day before Txgiving. All the leftovers from the "fat free!" era really do annoy me as a cook, and a human with a tongue.

Anyway: roast some veggies and make quiche.
posted by Dashy at 8:00 AM on November 25, 2018

It would probably make good chile con queso.
posted by neushoorn at 8:06 AM on November 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

Butter is milk fat.
posted by amtho at 8:20 AM on November 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

Might be useful to remember that 2% means it's half the fat, not just 2%. Full fat is about 4%. I love full fat and am perfectly content with 2%, while 1% and skim are totally different to my senses.
posted by cacao at 8:32 AM on November 25, 2018 [10 favorites]

This'll work just dandy in a nice, rich, creamy mac-and-cheese application -- use it in a recipe like this one and you won't notice the missing milkfat at all. (Add an extra cup of the cheese for best results. And I like mine spicy -- if you do too, swap in a cup of a habanero cheddar/jack, or a small can of roasted, diced green chile.)

It'll also be good in enchiladas, or melted over scrambled eggs (or especially migas). And for quesadillas, I actively prefer a lower-milkfat cheese, because I'm adding sauteed onions and peppers and the lower milkfat cheese tends to make for a less drippy/greasy result. Still delicious, but easier to eat.
posted by halation at 9:07 AM on November 25, 2018 [2 favorites]

Ditto mixing anything that adds fat back in: butter, heavy cream, bacon grease. You can’t go wrong with spicy dips and omelettes. You could even just get some canned chili and mix in a cup or two of the cheese shredded. Great for the winter months. :)
posted by johnxlibris at 9:14 AM on November 25, 2018

Once melted, lower-fat cheese is just as nice as full-fat cheese. Plus slightly less cheese grease...!
posted by devrim at 10:26 AM on November 25, 2018 [2 favorites]

In my experience low-fat and even "fat-free" cheez is pretty good sprinkled on top of a salad, if you like that sort of thing.

It's also makes a nice addition to mac-n-sleaze from a box. A little bit melted into the cheez goo makes it seem way more like something almost real.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 10:40 AM on November 25, 2018

If you freeze it, it'll get more rubbery and weird when it thaws.

But its perfectly fine for cooking*. I coarsely shred mine first, then very loosely pack it in something similar to a plastic 4L ice cream pail, and then freeze. I grab fistfuls from the bucket whenever I need to cook with cheese. No need to thaw, it'll thaw in situ.

*Get a microwave safe plate. Throw on a square of parchment paper. Sprinkle a loose layer of frozen shredded cheddar. Microwave on reheat - it'll start bubbling; as soon as it stops, stop the microwave. Let cool. You now have a wafer of cheese crisp.

They're great as is as a snack, they also make a great functional garnish for mashed potatoes.

Note: this doesn't work as well with fresh grated/ shredded cheese; it dehydrates a little in the freezer from sublimation.
posted by porpoise at 3:35 PM on November 25, 2018

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