What is semi-soft cheese?

Semi-soft cheeses are softer than semi-hard cheese, and more solid than soft cheese as a result of their dry matter or water content. The surface (with or without rind) can be uncoated or it can be covered with moist or dried cheese flora, yeasts and mould or coated with wax, paraffin or a plastic skin.

Semi-soft cheese has a typical soft and smooth consistency and it is easy to cut.

The semi-soft cheeses are stored in the same way as semi-hard and hard cheeses: Packed - not air-tight - in the vegetable compartment of the fridge.

Well-known types: Bergader Edelpilz, Weisslacker, Steinbuscher, Basils Original Rauchkäse, Biarom, Bianco, Morbier, Pyrenean cheese, sheep's cheese in brine, Reblochon, Esrom. Blue veined cheese also belongs to the semi-soft cheese category.

A blue veined cheese such as Bergader Edelpilz must be pricked prior to ripening so that the whole cheese block is streaked with blue. This means it is pricked with needles all round so that oxygen enters the cheese. It is only then that the mould can grow.

In the storage of blue veined cheeses it is particularly important that they are kept separate from other cheeses as there is otherwise a danger that the mould will "infect" the other cheeses and will no longer grow as a "good" edible mould but as a "bad" mould. Aluminium foil is the most suitable packaging.