There’s Another Reason to Keep Those Cheese Rinds

Preserving cheese rinds from Parmigiano Reggiano and the like is a classic, time-tested and waste-free hack. (Lifehacker first covered this over a decade ago.) It’s delightfully amazing to find new uses for cheese butts, but that’s exactly what the smart folks at Food52 have done. I’m not saying you should stop adding them to soups and sauces, but you should probably set one aside for olive oil.

This tip comes from a set of peel tips , but it’s the only one I haven’t heard of before:

If you love infused olive oil, you’ll love this trick! Take a pecorino romano cheese rind and add it to a jar of extra virgin olive oil. Leave this mixture for a few days for the flavor of the cheese to infuse the butter. You can also add other herbs and aromatics such as thyme, rosemary, and garlic for added impact. Serve with crispy bread as the perfect aperitif!

It’s so simple, so elegant that you just want to eat it. I immediately went to my freezer to fish out a parmesan rind to toss into the butter, only to realize that I had used the latter in the broth. Everything is good. I eat a lot of cheese.

Once you have the peel, rinse it and dry it with paper towels, then put it in a jar with enough oil to cover. Leave for a few days, then remove the peel and use the oil.

Besides dipping, which is definitely nice, this cheese butter can and should be used as the base of a vinaigrette, or emulsified with a little pasta water to make a simple sauce, or drizzled over grilled vegetables and meats, large bowls of rice. , or anything else you usually finish with olive oil. I’m also going to suggest you use it to make popcorn (then grate some cheese on top of that popcorn).


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