I don't know why we haven't discussed this before. Certainly, growing up in Wisconsin, I'm predisposed toward dairy products. Then last week, someone suggested I go into the caseic arts professionally.
And I do love me some cheese. Fat Guy, remember? It seems only logical that Fun Fact Friday should be full of melty goodness.
Cheesemaking fascinates me, and I love the concept of terroir as translated from winemaking to the science of cheesy comestibles. That all cheese comes from the same basic ingredients - milk, rennet and salt - yet maintains a worldly variety of flavors and textures, the idea kicks ass.
If you've never had a fresh cheese curd, you haven't fully lived. The sweet, salty, squeaky goodness is heaven. Batter them and deep fry them and it just gets better. Blue cheese on steak or in a Cobb salad? Yes, please. And what are carnitas without a little queso fresco?
And the nerdery of cheesemaking? Endless. There's so much involved in just adding the rennet enzyme (mmm...stomachy!) to milk, at the right temperature, treating the resulting curd to arrive at a soft or hard end product. Then there's aging, monitoring moisture content, adding flavors like horseradish, dill, caraway or wine, that make cheese so versatile.
And then there's dealing with the waste...er...whey. Whey can be used as fertilizer as well as a food additive, and I've known people who drink it for the protein. Somewhere down the line, nutrition stores caught on to this, and started isolating and powdering whey protein to help weightlifters bulk up.
Me, I prefer to bulk up the old-fashioned way.
By eating cheese.
Because there are times when my simple, country nerdiness isn't enough, go check here or here to find out the details of cheesemaking, and go here for a great interview about the modern science behind it all.
Oh, Just Shut Up and Lie Down Somewhere
3 weeks ago