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You’ve Been Cutting Cake (And Cheese?) Wrong

Slice cheese from the middle

The geniuses over at Numberphile have solved one of man’s greatest mysteries: how do you cut a cake without leaving it stale the next day? The traditional method of slicing cake into triangular wedges exposes two sides to open air, causing the cake to turn dry and hard. Turns out, mathematical scientist Sir Francis Galton had the answer all along. Cut straight slices from the middle of the cake, and push the remaining portions together (using a rubber band, if necessary) to keep air from hardening the exposed edges. Turn and repeat until the cake is gone.

This works for fondant covered cakes, but we see it getting pretty messy if you tried this method on traditional frosted cakes. One solution? Try it on cheese instead! The polite way to cut cheese of any shape has customarily been to slice it so all pieces have an equal distribution of rind to paste. Since the center of your cheese is likely a different taste and texture than the outer edge, ensuring an even ratio in each piece means that everyone can enjoy the same cheesy experience.

Lucky for us, this new method fits that rule. So if you have a wheel of cheese that you won’t finish in one sitting (a rarity in our office, but it still happens occasionally!), employ this scientific method to keep the supple interior fresh as can be. While this would work on any style of cheese, we think it’d be particularly helpful for softer, gooier cheeses by helping the wheel hold it’s shape.

Check out the slicing method below, and let us know if you try it!

Got cheese that’s not a wheel? Check out our detailed cheese cutting guide to slice cheese of all shapes and sizes, or watch our video below if you’re short on time.

Image taken from Numberphile video

Alicia Hahn

Alicia Hahn is an online editorial intern for culture who excels at eating and enjoys writing, crosswords, and cooking (preferably with cheese). Originally from San Francisco, she moved to Boston for school and fell in love with the city (despite an annual campaign against winter). Her favorite place to be is the farmers’ market, where she finds weird and exciting ingredients to make or break her next meal.