Does Parmesan Cheese Melt? Not Always , And Here’s Why

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9 How Long Does Parmesan Cheese Take To Melt?

If you are a pasta epicure, then surely you must be curious about parmesan cheese. It is a ‘panacea’ to all the delicious dips and sauces for pasta.

But a lot of discussions were held on this topic, "Does Parmesan Cheese Melt?"

Parmesan comes in varied types, and the melting of the cheese depends on the type you choose.

Scroll through the entire article to get complete knowledge about the various types of parmesan cheese, their melting process and related facets.

Does Parmesan Cheese Melt?

Yes, parmesan cheese does melt. Parmesan is produced from rennet- a mixture of enzymes used to thicken the milk for making cheese.

It contains a lot of salt and has a rich umami flavour (savoury) which enhances the taste of dips and sauces.

Noting these points, parmesan is a cheese used to add creaminess and nice texture to your sauces. But sometimes, parmesan cheese doesn’t melt. If you’re facing the same issue, then we’ll discuss here why that happens.

But before jumping onto that, let us see a few types of parmesan cheese to understand which is made for melting and which is not.

Types Of Parmesan Cheese

Store-bought/ Pre-grated Parmesan

Usually, store-bought parmesan isn’t fresh, and this reason can be enough for your cheese getting clumpy instead of a good melt.

Store-bought parmesan is assumed to have a layer of cornstarch coating on it. This can destroy the quality of melt you’re looking for. Hence, pre-grated cheese may or may not melt.

Freshly grated cheese

Freshly grated cheese is the lump of parmesan that you buy from the store and grate it fresh at home. If you buy the perfect top-quality parmesan, then it’ll melt just as you introduce a touch of heat to it.

Parmigiano Reggiano is the original Italian cheese of which parmesan cheese is just a substitute. If you’re using this cheese, you’ll get the perfect melt you desire. But this cheese is expensive and not readily available. In such cases, a good-quality parmesan can also serve the purpose.

Ground Parmesan

Fine, ground parmesan is not made for melting. This type of cheese is suitable to top over the fries or any baked good. But if you’re looking for a melt, dump the idea.

Parmesan flakes/ shavings

Shredded or flaky parmesan cheese is a size bigger than the grated ones. Flaky parmesan does melt but again depends on the quality of the cheese. They have a bit more bitter taste than the store-bought ones.

Why Does My Parmesan Don’t Melt?

The fresher your parmesan, the quicker it melts. As we saw earlier, ground parmesan is a not-to-go option for melting. So, if you think of melting it, it’s just a waste.

On the other hand, Parmigiano Reggiano, an echt cheese, is always best for melting. It melts immediately and gives a thick consistency to your sauces and dips.

Even if you use fresh, good-quality parmesan, it’ll take a few minutes but give you a nice melt.

Now, here’s when you start having problems. Even after considering all the above things, you might not get a perfect melt or, rather, a clumped and stringed up melt.

Let us look at why cheese clumps up while melting and know certain tips and tricks to avoid it.

How To Avoid Clumping Of Parmesan?

It is not always the case that you get a perfect melt even after having good-quality cheese. All of this depends on how the cheese has been processed and stored. So, you need to have trial and error rounds before you make the best out of it.

Although there’s a bunch of options you can try, and they might help you get a perfect melt, but there’s no guarantee.

Ensure that the outer surface of your cheese is dry. Moisture on the outside can be a reason for your cheese to string up.

Dust a very little bit of corn starch or plain flour on the cheese if you find moisture. A non-stick agent is good to better the chances of getting a good melt.

Old, stale cheese is a counterfeit for melting.

Even if you got a clumpy form, stir the mixture for a while until it gets apart and melts properly.

Some cheeses have acids added to them along with the rennet to preserve for a long time. This can hinder the process of melting.

Always take a fresh cheese block for melting.

Ensure that you are adding the cheese to a hot dish on the stove.

Try using these tips to melt your cheese, and if it still does not fetch your desired outcome, don’t be disappointed. It’s all the quality of the cheese and not you.

How Long Does Parmesan Cheese Take To Melt?

Parmigiano Reggiano or the real cheese does not require much heat. It is a hard cheese with a low melting point.

Even then, this cheese has a higher melting point than mozzarella, a softer cheese.

Although parmesan has a higher melting point than softer cheeses, it still requires less heat exposure.

Generally, a real parmesan is ought to melt at a temperature of about 180 degrees Fahrenheit. The other soft cheeses like mozzarella require 130-150 degrees Fahrenheit to dissolve properly.

To reach the perfect temperature, you are supposed to add the cheese to a hot dish kept on a stove, and it’ll immediately start melting.

Parmesan or any cheese for that matter starts melting at about 90 degrees Fahrenheit. The milk solids and fats start liquefying, and the cheese turns soft at this temperature.

So, even if you bought the wrong or low-quality parmesan cheese, it’ll also soften and start melting at 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Although, no guarantee of a perfect melt or desired consistency later.

You can also be able to notice that parmesan doesn’t melt completely. Because it has a few moisture particles in it, that gives a lumpy finish at times. So, it may happen that a part of it has melted and bound with the sauce thoroughly, but there are few lumps left behind.

Don’t worry; even this is delicious. Sometimes, you can observe this on pizza as well.

While you’re baking parmesan, it will react differently. The extreme heat can make it turn golden brown and give a hard finish. Even this is delicious; however, not the creamy one that you’re looking for.

A Slight Glimpse On Parmigiano Reggiano

Parmigiano Reggiano is the real cheese produced from cow’s milk and stored for 12 months to age.

It is an Italian cheese that is hard, crumbly in texture.

The cheese got its name after being produced in the Italian provinces of Parma, Reggio Emilia, Bologna west, and Modena.

Parmigiano is after Parma and Reggiano is after Reggio Emilia, thus the name Parmigiano Reggiano.

Parmigiano Reggiano and Parmesan both are protected designations of origin (PDO). PDO is a European identification mark for using food products legally.

Parmesan has many variants and, thus, one cannot sell fake parmesan as PDO Parmigiano Reggiano under this law.

Conclusion

So, we got to know that parmesan does melt. The fresher the cheese, the better melt you have. So, if you’re looking to have a hard cheese crust on your sandwiches or grate it over your hot-baked pizzas for a nice and delicious crispy texture, surely try parmesan. But for creamy, saucy dips, it may or may not be a good option.

You can also stack them in rounds and bake them as a crispy snack. It’s an Italian snack called frico. Fricos are used to garnish salads, cheese pallets, fruit pallets and many other Italian servings.

The melting of the cheese depends on the quality of the cheese that is derived from the way it was produced and stored.

We hope this article was beneficial for you to understand the various types of parmesan and why sometimes your parmesan doesn’t melt.

If you have any other food curiosity, make sure to drop them below in the comments. Until then, good luck with your parmesan!

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