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How to Select Cheese and the different types of milk

How to Select Cheese and the different types of milk - Visual

Our cheeses offer a very wide range of flavours, from the mildness of fresh Brie to the sharp taste of a blue.

How do you choose? Simple: trust your taste buds, because there is a cheese for every taste. Whether it’s from the supermarket or the cheese maker, before buying an unknown cheese, you have to taste it. Tasting the cheese is always a good idea. You can also go by the rind’s texture and colour or the cheese’s appearance. Always check the “best before” date on the package.

Soft cheeses are as spongy outside as inside.

Semi-soft cheeses have a certain suppleness, but are not as supple as soft cheeses.

Raw, pasteurized or thermized milk...what are the differences?

Everyone knows that milk is cheese’s main ingredient. But what kinds of milk are used? Raw, pasteurized and thermized milks are used to make a variety of Quebec cheeses.

Here are the different types of milk:

Raw milk

Raw-milk cheese retains the properties and characteristics of its natural lactic starter cultures, such as antibodies. In order to ensure quality, the milk needs to be refrigerated as soon as it is collected, and the cheese needs to be made within 24 hours following the milking. For safety reasons, before being sold to consumers, the cheese needs to be aged for 60 days, the time it takes to eliminate bacterial pathogens that might develop. Raw-milk cheeses are often farm-made cheeses or artisanal cheeses with more subtle and complex flavours and aromas.

Pasteurized milk

Raw milk is pasteurized to destroy bacteria, microbes or pathogenic microorganisms while retaining its nutritional qualities (proteins, minerals and vitamins). The main beneficial bacteria, which are destroyed in the pasteurization process, are replaced by others that have been selected and standardized in a laboratory. There are two pasteurization methods: low-temperature (milk is heated at 61.6°C for 30 minutes) or high-temperature (between 72 to 85°C for 15 to 20 seconds) pasteurization. The milk that we normally drink is pasteurized, and it’s also what is most often used in industrial cheese making.

Thermized milk

Thermized milk is heated for several seconds at a lower temperature than what is required for pasteurization (57 to 63.5°C). Cheese makers came up with this solution to impede bacteria without destroying the quality of the milk’s flavours. However, this method of cheese making is less popular because it requires special equipment, which is often too costly for small cheese makers.

No matter what kind of milk is used, the cheese’s quality is obtained through meticulous work and the use of quality ingredients. Cheese making is a complex art that still has room for innovation...