Viva la cheesy taste baby!
Can’t get enough of it! You sprinkle it on top of pasta, cube it for salads and the cheese/crackers with wine are perfect for those attitude adjustment hours. Its silky mouth-feel on comfort foods such as Mac n’ Cheese, queso dip, grilled cheese sandwiches, quiche and cheesy soups (French onion) all make your mouth water with arrival anticipation. The most popular food in America, pizza, is usually overwhelmed with some type(s) of cheese(s). All based on curdled milk that has been inoculated with specific organisms to give a certain taste, smell and look.
Cheese adds flavor through a fifth sense of taste, get this, Unami pronounced (u mami). This taste is found in mushrooms, fish, shellfish, green tea and aged products (cheese, soy sauce, cured meats, etc.)
Cheese increased in popularity in the U.S. when dairy farmers saw a way to make up for the decrease in milk consumption. In the 50’s, yearly cheese intake was an average 8 lbs per person. In the 2011, the amount of cheese consumed over 12 months has more than quadrupled to 33 lbs per individual.
The harder the cheese, the more saturated fat is contained within the product. Saturated fat is one of the major components in food that increases cholesterol production in the cells. Over time, this increases the risk for cardiovascular disease, which includes heart attack and stroke, and acceleration of certain types of cancers.
Renovating Your Mind has preciously discussed cheese’s history that included a lovely song at the end of the article. If interested, here is the link:
Why manufacturers make your convenience a priority is because by packaging shredded cheeses they make a greater profit.
First, most shredded cheese contains fiber which is paper pulp. It makes the product last longer by absorbing any excess moisture. Personally, I want cheese in my cheese not paper products or any other ingredients that increase shelf life. Next, when they shred at the manufacturer, the product is more exposed to light and heat. This cause a loss in quality because of the shred. It is more expensive because they are shredding it for you. Most importantly, you are paying for cheese when some of the cheese is really inexpensive pulverized paper.
There are different melt patterns that manufacturers configure for various recipes.
For cheeseburgers, we have the picnic “tablecloth” melt where the cheese hangs down on the meat like a tablecloth. This utilizes the American processed cheese slice originated by Kraft in 1915.
Then there is the stretchy rendition of mozzarella that you have may choked on when you scarfed down that slice of pizza. Also, for a “perfect” Mac n’ Cheese, every square inch must be covered with melted processed cheese where even the holes in the pasta are filled to capacity. This is called a “creamy melt.”
- Grate your own hunk of cheese.
- Stay away from pre-shredded cheese. Instruct children how to shred cheese safely.
- If you must use processed, look for the best label ingredients.
- Natural cheese is composed of only four basic ingredients. They are milk, bacteria (organisms), enzymes and salt.
- To cut calories and fat, sprinkle grated cheese on the top of the food towards the end of the cooking interval. You will achieve the same delicious effect with much less product.
- Old cheese will leave pools of oil after melting. Fat and protein separate in the product causing a lousy melt.
- Check product expiration dates. Don’t purchase cheese that is close to expiring and discounted by the supermarket.
Oh yeah! Viva la cheesy taste baby.