Hard cheeses can be stirred into pastas but are most often sprinkled on top at the last minute, adding a final blast of flavor. Many varieties are aged, giving them a bold, salty taste, so a little goes a long way. For maximum freshness, buy hard cheese in wedges and grate as needed. But pre-grated cheese is fine, too. Bring it to the table and let people serve themselves.
2 of 2Anna Williams
Soft cheeses make sauces wonderfully creamy and rich. And because they melt quickly, you can incorporate them easily into pestos, marinaras, and puttanescas to give plain noodles a smooth, flavorful coating. Crumble or chop the cheese before adding it to a dish, a couple of tablespoons at a time, tasting as you go.