Hard cheese is a cheese that is characterized by its high dry matter . Hard cheese has the longest ripening time of all types of cheese - depending on the type, it is between three months and over three years. It therefore has a strong taste and its aroma is very intense.
According to the German cheese ordinance , hard cheese may contain a maximum of 56% water content in the fat-free cheese mass. There are exceptions for cheeses named after their location.
In the production of hard cheese which is with Lab renneted cheese mass ( curd ) to the cheese harp broken until the individual particles of fracture only there are approximately wheat grain size; this allows more whey to drain off. The curd is then heated to between 50 ° C (hard cheese) and 55 ° C ( extra- hard cheese), depending on the type of cheese , which explains the high proportion of dry matter. The mass is then filled into molds, pressed, dipped in brine and stored in the ripening cellar or in a cave , where certain bacteria (if desired) produce carbon dioxide and propionic acid , which on the one hand leads to the formation of holes and on the other hand contributes to the aroma of the cheese.
Many hard cheeses are rubbed or brushed off several times with table salt during the ripening process . The salt removes moisture from the surface. This is how the so-called bark is created. Hard cheese, which should not have a rind, is placed in foil to ripen. This cheese then gets a wax or paraffin skin when the maturing process is complete.
The hard cheeses include:
In Switzerland, a distinction is made between hard cheese and extra- hard cheese . Extra hard cheese differs from hard cheese primarily in that it matures for at least 18 months until it is ready for consumption and three years until it is fully ripe. The extra hard cheeses include Sbrinz , Berner Hobelkäse and Walliser Raclette Hobelkäse , sometimes also Parmesan (which, like Grana, is not made in Switzerland and therefore does not come under Swiss cheese law ( cheese type )). The Appenzeller is in Germany as hard cheeses in his country of origin as a semi-hard cheese classified.
- Lebensmittel-Warenkunde.de: Hard cheese and soft cheese , accessed on February 27, 2011