I think EVERYONE is going to love this post – unless you have an allergy. 🙁 Here on Live Lighter once again is guest blogger and flexitarian cookbook author, Bindu Grandhi. Today she talks about cheese, it’s goodness and shares a yummy recipe with us!
There are thousands of cheeses in the world – made from the milk of reindeer, buffalo, yaks, sheep, goats and most commonly, cows.
What I never realized is that the nuance of flavor in cheese depends on a myriad of factors, such as the grass, herbs and flowers on which the animal grazed, the makeup of soil, the breed of animal, the season in which the animal is milked, the climate and, of course, the talent of the cheese-maker.
Here’s a little cheese 101 for you: regardless of variety, there are five essential ingredients to create cheese:
- Milk (may or may not be pasteurized)
- Curdling agents (acid or bacterial cultures) which bind the protein and the fat
- Salt which stops acidification and slows the expulsion of whey which determines the final texture of cheese and prevents the growth of spoilage bacteria
- Microbial cultures which influence the flavor
- Time or aging of the cheese
No matter the variety, flavor or how it’s served, cheese is simply scrumptious! We love it in pizza, crumbled in salads, topped on sandwiches, cooked in pastries and savory French and Italian dishes. Yet dieticians warn that too much consumption leads to cholesterol.
Because of its fat content, cheese has been classified as a dietary villain. But thanks to a nutritional game-changer, a recent study by Danish researchers, found that the consumption of cheese, unlike butter, has no effect on cholesterol. The researchers note that ‘fermentation’ is cheese’s protective factor.
Apparently, the bacterial organisms used in cheese-making not only favorably influence the makeup of fatty acids in the digestive process, but also dismantle cholesterol.¹
In the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers state that dietary advice restricting cheese intake may need to be revised. That’s good news as we enter the spring season which typically brings cheeses that after several months of aging transfer the pasture-rich flavor of summer milk to the table.
So in the spirit of eating cheese and feeling less guilty – try this recipe, Garlic Chili Cheese Toast, it’s a family favorite. Cheers!
Click on the link below for recipe and demo: http://theflexcook.com/garlic%20chili%20cheese%20toast.html
¹Psychology Today, March/April 2012. “Cheese Whiz,” p. 44-45
About the Author
Author of Spice Up Your Life, Bindu Grandhi is passionate about healthy and flavourful cooking, especially when it’s flexitarian. She shares her health knowledge with the world by providing practical, healthy and tasty recipes as The Flex Cook.
What’s YOUR favourite cheese?