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How to Use Leftover Parmigiano Reggiano Rinds

Eataly Magazine (April 26, 2019)
Inevitably, we always have leftover Parmigiano Reggiano rinds. So what do we do with these hard, seemingly inedible pieces? It's simple: we do what our ancestors have always done and we find a way to cook with them!

WAIT – CAN YOU EAT THE RIND?

Technically, yes! The rind is a protective layer that develops on the outside of the cheese wheel as it ages. While it is edible, it can become too hard and tough to chew (think of it as the crust on a loaf bread). Still, Parmigiano Reggiano rinds are packed full of flavor and can be used to enrich sauces, soups, stews and more.

SO, HOW CAN YOU USE THEM?

Here are some of our favorite ways to use leftover Parmigiano Reggiano rinds. Simply store the rinds in an airtight container in the fridge until you're ready to use them. You'll never think twice about throwing them away again!

1. Flavor your sauces and soups.

Plop the rinds into your next tomato sauce, ragù, or soup and let it simmer. Remove whatever is left of the rind just before serving. It will add a salty flavor and thicken everything up.

2. Infuse your extra virgin olive oil.

If you love the taste of olive oil and Parmigiano Reggiano, why not combine the two? Add the rind to a bottle or sealed container of high-quality extra virgin olive oil and let it sit for a few days. Then, serve as a dipping oil with slices of crusty Italian bread.

3. Make a flavorful Parmigiano Reggiano broth.

Save up four to five rinds in the fridge. Once you have about 10 ounces, make this recipe for Parmigiano Reggiano broth. It's perfect for serving with agnolotti del plin, tortellini, or using in risotto.

4. Add to risotto.

Make your risotto even richer with the addition of the rinds! Put the rinds in the risotto after it's halfway done cooking. Let everything simmer as you stir and add more broth. Remove the rinds before serving.

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