the cheese debate. sliced or shredded?

it’s no question that cheese is one of the most important elements on a pizza. but all in all, what is more efficient?
when using slices of cheese, are you using more or less than using shredded?
does it affect the outcome in flavor and appearance?

Third choice: diced

Sliced cheese will either overlap making a not very consistant layer or leave bare spots that look like you skimped on the cheese. I would choose shredded over sliced and diced over shredded.

Actually, if you are weighing out your cheese, the form should not affect/effect the consitent portioning of your cheese. The various forms will make a difference in application ease, storage methods, pie coverage, melting characteristics and overall appearance of the pie.

I use shredded as it is convenient enough to justify the price right now, and I cannot find diced in what I use.

dice it yourself Nick, or better yet, grate it yourself. grating 50 pounds of cheese takes no more than twenty minutes.

the application/weighing of shred vrs diced favors diced…

when we go 100+ pies/hr there is no way we could weigh shred…

CiCi’s shreds their cheese, but very few weigh due to the volume of pies made…

I come from a shred background, but for the past few yrs have become a diced convert…

it is harder to find a diced to your liking, perhaps, but in many areas you might find a suitable blend…

Roma has a house brand called Northstar that is a mozz/prov blend - not bad…

I blend Grande & the GFS house brand…like that very much…

so, i should dice my cheese?
what are we talking here, quarter inch dice?
isn’t that more time consuming than shredding it on a box grater?

chances are, you don’t have the equipment to actually “dice” cheese as we are discussing…

most operators buy their cheese “diced” or “shredded”…some, like CiCi’s, shred their own…

there might be a small cost savings in shredding your own cheese…if you have a “pelican head” attachment for your dough mixer…

I believe if you have a “vertical cutter mixer” you could adequately “dice” your cheese, as this is one of the uses of this type of machine…Little Caesars used/uses this mixer to make their dough and I believe process their cheese…

personally, I buy cheese already diced, as I’ve not found the “block” cheeses I prefer nor do I have the right equipment…

I don’t have the equipment to dice or shred myself efficiently or effectively. I would end up burning out several 11 cup cusinart mixers a month, or having to use a box grater and praying for no knuckles in the blend. (no dough mixer, and no $$$ for a power grater yet).

Unless you are making deep dish, where sliced is the customary version, you will get a more consistant product by measuring shredded or diced cheese. Review the archives for this subject, and for Big Dave’s Cheese Cup procedure.

As to the question of shredding yourself or purchasing preshredded cheese, that depends on your staffing system and the cheese types available. If you have staff on hand that has the free time to grate cheese (ie. if you can lean, you can grate), then its more cost efficient to use the labor your already paying for, and purchase the cheese at the lowest possible cost…by the brick.

But if you are so busy that you would have to add staffing hours just to grate cheese, then its more efficient to purchase pregrated, or prediced.

As for the quesion of grated or diced… Grated works well if you measure cheese by weight, but can be inconsistant if you measure with cups. Especially if you grate yourself, as it tends to clump back together. Diced works well if you measure using cups and measure by weight, but isn’t available in every cheese brand.

Finally, consider your alternate cheese uses. Pregrated and prediced cheese are coated with a wax to prevent clumping. Thats great for pizzas, but not so great for salads. Also, you may not consider diced suitable for salad use.

Nick, I used an 11 quart Kitchen Aid for 4 years. For 300#s per week, you will use about 4 $55 blade kits per year, but the kitchen aid will endure just fine. It takes about 20 minutes to grate a tub containing 24#s of cheese. It was a fine system for sales under $5000 per week, but I have now switched to prediced, so I could use my labor on other prep.

thank you for all of your input and help.
one more question.
if i have the time and the labor to begin dicing my cheese, how do i go about doing that?
and isn’t there a machine i can buy that will shred my cheese in a short period of time. what about a robot coupe?