Have you ever tried making pizza at home? If yes, have you ever seen the cheese melting on the top? How satisfying it is! Isn’t it? But, have you ever wondered if there is any cheese that could not melt? The answer is YES! How surprising! Yes, I am talking about feta cheese here.
Have you ever tried melting feta cheese? If yes, you may have wondered, why wouldn’t it melt? After all, it is cheese, Isn’t it?
Well, I am here to feed your curiosities. I am going to share what I observed while melting feta cheese. It may surprise you!
First let me tell you, Feta cheese is a Geek brined curd white cheese which is made from goat and sheep’s milk. It comes in various forms like block, wheel, and crumble.
First, you must know what melting a cheese actually means? When we say melt, it means transforming into that soft, gooey, creamy, and luscious texture.
Well, as I already told you, feta does not melt. This is because feta cheese is highly acidic and has a high moisture level due to the process used to make it. When melted, the cheese curds of feta soften, but feta does not melt in the same way that a stringy cheese like mozzarella and cheddar does. When it is heated, neither the cheese liquifies nor its curds change their shape. But the texture does change significantly.
Fun fact- It is not only feta cheese that will never melt. There are some more cheeses on the list like creamy Goat cheese, Cypriot halloumi, Italian ricotta, Mexican cotija cheese, and our very own Indian Paneer, etc.
If you have ever tried melting feta cheese, Indian paneer, or any other crumbly cheeses, you might have wondered why they do not melt at all. Does this fact make these cheeses fake?
Absolutely not, it is still a cheese even though it does not melt. Actually, there is a scientific reason behind this. It is because feta cheese is highly acidic and contains high water content. According to the facts, for every 150 grams of your typical salty feta cheese, 83 grams of it is water i.e. more than half of feta cheese’s weight. And, for every 100 grams of your typical feta cheese, shockingly 19% of it is acidic. Therefore, the acid dissolves the calcium content which binds the cheese together. So, when acid-based cheeses are heated, water is completely expelled. As the water is expelled the cheese loses its moisture resulting in not flowing completely. Instead, the protein content in the cheese solidifies, due to which the cheese may not melt and will not change its shape when heated.
Even though feta cheese can not melt as a slice of cheese is required to, it has its wonderful advantages which might be able to persuade you to still give it a try. What if you want to bake a ball of cheese, or crumble some of it onto a salad?
That’s where feta cheese comes into the picture!
- Feta cheese is the best option out there for making fried, grilled, or baked cheese balls because of its ability to retain its shape.
- Feta cheese is also an excellent cheese that can be used for sprinkling onto salads or as a topping for a dish. It works wonders if you use it as a topping for a greek dish. I can vouch for this.
- Feta cheese can rock any dish or meal that requires a seasoning of salty delish!
As we know, it simply cannot melt. But it gets soft. When heated, it leads to the formation of a lump of soft and buttery fluff. If you want an amazing flavor of feta cheese, just bake it in the oven till it turns brown. This will enhance its tangy and briny taste.
Despite the fact that there is no actual way to melt feta cheese, there are some tricks or ways to make it seem creamy or melty. Here’s the ultimate guide to melt your feta cheese.
If you are making something like a sandwich where you can mix it with other melty cheeses then, you will get that soupy, flowy deliciousness that you crave for. Just take into consideration the overpowering flavor of feta cheese and add it in a reasonable amount, as to maintain the overall flavor.
Another way to melt feta cheese is to double boil it. All you have to do is place a container or pot filled with feta over another pot of boiling water. Pour some whole fat milk along with it and mix constantly. Then you will get a saucy consistency, that’s when you have to add any thickening agent for example cornstarch. As a result, you will get a bowl of melty looking cheese.
For quickly melting your feta cheese or anyways, a microwave is the best option. Place the cheese in a microwave-safe bowl, add a little cornstarch and milk. Start melting at high heat for approximately 30 seconds and stir well until it becomes uniform and has a smooth, playful consistency.
If the corn begins to thicken, add water to thin the mixture. While heating the feta cheese, adjust the consistency to find the proper fluidity.
Here, Milk acts as a catalyst as it speeds up the process.
- It is not recommended to microwave the original plastic container in which the feta is contained. Plastic containers are intended for single use only and are not designed to withstand high temperatures. Placing them in the microwave can distort and melt the plastic, leaching chemicals that are harmful to the cheese.
- Returning cheese to room temperature for 20 minutes will help the cheese reach its melting point, but do not leave fresh cheese at room temperature for more than 2 hours.
- Crush the feta cheese into small pieces and let the heat infiltrate and melt it quickly. Start with medium heat to prevent the fat from separating and clumping in the cheese.
Now, hurry and give it a try. And lemme know!