I saw a tip recently that said I’d be able to freeze blocks of cheese without crumbliness as long as I let the block thaw to room temperature before using. Since cheese is really expensive in my small town, I stock up when there are sales. (I refuse to pay more than 3 dollars a pound for cheese, and that’s still more than I used to pay. I aim for $2-2.50 a lb., so I keep a close eye on the grocery ads.)
I’ve had mixed success with this method. I’ve done it the same each time:
1. Put frozen block of cheese on a plate or towel to catch drips.
2. Leave it there for at least half a day until the cheese is completely thawed and almost warm to touch. (These are 2 lb. blocks.) Don’t worry, it won’t spoil from being out this long. It’s cheese. Think about how it was made.
3. Slice a piece to see if it really worked. No crumbles = success!
It does work, but only about 2/3 of the time. I have no good explanation for why that is. However, I feel completely confident that if I end up with crumbly cheese, I can just shred it and use it that way. I will definitely continue to use this tip, even though I haven’t had 100% success. The crumbly cheese is still less crumbly than it would be if I just let it thaw in the fridge.
Update in 2019: I buy mostly grated cheese for convenience and because it’s just as cheap as the blocks. However, blocks have a stronger (better) taste and take up less space in the freezer. Your call!