Cheese Quote of the Week . . .

"Well, many's the long night I've dreamed of cheese -- toasted, mostly . . . "
-- Robert Louis Stevenson

Monday, July 12, 2010

Eating Her Curds and Whey . . .

Well, we've done an entry on cheese curds -- maybe it's time to do one on that strange, mysterious product . . . Velveeta. Prompted by Jack's grandfather, who for some reason harbors fond memories of this odd product, we decided to dig in.

According to Wikipedia, this stuff (described as a "pasteurized prepared cheese product") was first invented in 1918 by a Swiss immigrant (does that make it another kind of Swiss cheese?) working for the Monroe Cheese Company. By 1927, Kraft owned it. But let's face it, you don't want to know this stuff -- you want to know what's in it.

Well, milk and whey (that would be the other food item in Little Miss Muffet's bowl) both play a part in various forms. So it's sort of cheese-like, if you consider the "milk plasma that remains after milk has been curdled and strained" cheese.

Jack had his first taste of Velveeta last weekend - check out his expression! But actually his assessment was, "yummy, salty plasticity," which is somewhat positive -- although he does add that it's, "unnervingly soft." The scent is something akin to Cheese Whiz.

If Velveeta has a virtue, it's probably that it melts easily and evenly. Kraft has a pretty cool Velveeta section -- it even has videos!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Toasted, Mostly

Now that both members of the Cheese Stands Alone team are back on board, we wanted to alert readers to a fabulous idea: baked cheese. Recently, the Jack half of the team had the opportunity to tour a nearby farmer's market with one of his favorite surrogate parents, and he brought this home for us to try. It's called Brun-Uusto Bruncow's Baked Cheese, and it seems a bit sturdier than most cheese. We don't think this would really work with Brie.
First, you oil a ridged skillet -- and possibly sprinkle it with herbs and minced garlic, if you'd like. Then, turn the heat up to medium-high and cut the cheese into cubes. Flip the cubes a few times -- it cooks pretty quickly-- until you can see the ridge lines on the cheese (Jack says they are easy to overcook).

You know, we thought that cheese couldn't get much better than it already is, but we couldn't get enough of this stuff.