How to make CHEESE & Different varieties of CHEESE

The hundreds of varieties of cheese can be distinguished firstly by the type of milk: cow’s goat’s ewe’s. Sometimes mixed, or even mare’s and buffalo’s; also, the milk can be whole, skimmed, or enriched.

There are four stages in the basic process:

  • ACIDIFICATION OF THE MILK: This is sometimes performed by lactic yeasts.

  • COAGULATION OR CURDLING: The casein (milk protein) coagulates following the addition of rennet or, more rarely, by natural lactic fermentation of the Illicro-organisms in the milk. The milk then separates into the curds and liquid whey.

  • GUTTING AND DRAINING THE CURDS: After being separated from the whey, the curds can either be made into fresh cheese or processed further, in which case the curds are stirred, kneaded, or cut; in some cases, they are cooked.
  • They are then put into moulds (sometimes a bacteria culture is added) and left to drain, an operation that is promoted by salting (either on the surface or by immersion in brine).

  • RIPENING: This allows the cheese to develop its characteristic texture, colour, and flavour. The cheese is left for varying lengths of time in a damp or dry atmosphere, often in special places (cellars)

The classification of cheeses

FRESH CHEESES

Unripened, coagulated by the action of microorganisms in the milk without the addition of rennet, drained slowly, usually having a high water content, sometimes salted (demi-sel) or beaten with cream (Petit-Suisse).

SOFT CHEESES WITH DOWNY RIND

Obtained by mixed curdling (i.e. rennet and natural fermentation), not kneaded, drained spontaneously, shaped, coated with a bacteria culture, then ripened. Examples: Camembert, Brie, Chaource, Neufchatel and Saint-Marcellin.

SOFT CHEESES WITH WASHED RIND

Made by mixed curdling and cut to accelerate draining; the surface is washed in salted water during ripening. Examples: Livarot, Munster, Feta, Caboc (Scottish), Époisses, Langres and Pont l’Évéque.

VEINED CHEESES

cut after curdling, sometimes stirred, then cultured with bacteria at the time of shaping to give green or blue veins. Examples: blue cheeses, Forumes, Stilton, Blue Cheshire, and Gorgonzola.

PRESSED CHEESES

Curdled by rennet and draining accelerated by cutting, stirring, and pressing. Examples: Cantal, Reblochon, Saint-Nectaire, Tommes and Cheddar. Some, particularly Dutch cheeses such as Edam, have an inedible wax rind.

GOAT’S-MILK CHEESES

These may be soft or hard, depending on their age, and have a downy rind (sometimes coated in ashes), except in fresh cheeses and some veined cheeses, such as Bleu des Aravis.

MIXED-MILK CHEESES

From goat’s and cow’s milk, or ewe’s and cow’s milk, these may be fresh or soft; including some veined cheeses and Chevrotins.

SHAPED-CURD CHEESES

mainly Italian (Mozzarella, Provolone — only the immature ones, Caciocavallo); after cutting, the curds are mixed with whey, heated, kneaded or stretched to obtain an elastic, slightly rubbery consistency, then shaped; they are eaten fresh, dried or smoked.

Cheese in cookery

Many cheeses can be used in cookery, as a basic ingredient or to add flavour.

They can either be used raw (in mixed salads, canapés, pastry or pie dough and on bread) or, more often, cooked (for soufflés, omelettes, sauces, pancakes, puff pastries, pizzas and soups).

There is a large variety of dishes based on cheese: flamiche, fondue, keshy yena, Welsh rarebit, raclette, gougére, croque-monsieur, croütes, patranque, goyére, truffade, imbrucciata, aligot. Fresh soft cheese is used more in patisserie.

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  1. Very nice Gaurav

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