Semi-hard cheese includes all time favorites like Cheddar, Gouda, Havarti & Gryuère.
A perfect balance of moisture and aridity, these cheeses provide a firm, slightly springy texture with a delicate blend of savoury and tangy flavours. Usually dense in consistency, the cheese is often made by compressing curds into a solid, draining them of any remaining whey in the process. Taken directly from their moulds, some cheeses (i.e. Gouda, Edam and Jarlsberg) receive a coating of wax, thus avoiding the need for brine. Typically, semi-hard cheeses are aged anywhere between 1 and 6 months depending on each specific type.
Having aged less than half a year, semi-hard cheeses are characterised by their relatively mild taste and aroma. Due to the lack of moisture, the fragrance rarely pronounces itself too strongly. Semi-hard cheeses often are characterized by soft touches of hazelnuts and seared butter, along with a diverse line-up of mellow nuances. Semi-hard cheese melts and spreads evenly when grated, with firmer and slightly older cheeses guaranteeing neat slices every time. Opting to grate the cheese yourself delivers a clearer palate than shop-bought variants, which tend to be a mixture of multiple types.
Often wearing a wax or cloth coating, semi-hard cheeses with natural rinds are edible all the way through, intensifying in flavour towards the exterior.
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