When I was a child I thought ‘Parmesan cheese’ was something that came out of a tube as a dried powder. Later in life I would discover the authentic product and swore off dried parmesan.
Until I made it myself.
I recently dehydrated some Parmesan cheese and turned it into powder to see what would happen. The results? Surprisingly fantastic. When you dehydrate something you remove water content and are left with the concentrated flavors. In this case the flavors that remain are salty, savory and deeply cheesy. It resembles the product from the tubes except the flavor is far more intense.
More than 80% of the weight was lost in the drying process. 120 grams of Parmesan was less than 20 grams of dried Parmesan (just more than a half cup). Although the jar looks very modest, the flavors are so intense that a small amount goes a long way (and longer than the commercial product we used to buy). We’ve used it with pasta, soup and sauces.
Homemade Dried Parmesan Cheese – Instructions
- 1 piece of Parmesan cheese ( I use about 200 grams and expect it to lose 80-90% of it's weight)
- Shave pieces of cheese (with a vegetable peeler or grater) and place them in the dehydrator at 125 degrees. If your pieces are small you will want to stop them from blowing away by covering them with cheesecloth or something else that's breathable (I used a second liner from my dehydrator) that will allow air to circulate while stopping the cheese from blowing away.
- Dry for 8-12 hours until the cheese is completely dry when crumbled.
- To create the powder, freeze the cheese morsels for 10 minutes (this makes them brittle) before blitzing them in a spice grinder or high-speed blender
- The cheese should last for a long time in the fridge and has become a staple in our home.