In France, cheese is eaten a lot and with great pleasure. Most of all – in the central regions of the country: their inhabitants eat an average of 40-50 grams of cheese per day, in contrast to the inhabitants of the eastern regions, who need 10-20 grams. The annual consumption of cheese by one Frenchman is 22.8 kg. About 1,577,000 tons are produced per year, 458,000 tons are exported.
Yes, in France they love cheese and know a lot about it. After all, it was not for nothing that the already quite famous joke of Charles de Gaulle appeared: “How can you govern a country that has as many varieties of cheese as there are days in a year!”It seems that the great general was modest: there are at least five hundred cheeses in France. And maybe more.
This amazing product is sung in the poems of Aristotle, Virgil and Homer (For details, you can refer to the original sources). What can we say about French poets? Here is just one quatrain (for lovers of the French language):
Besides cheese is considered so expensive in France that even in the will of the French poet François Villon, who lived in the 15th century, there is a line in which he bequeaths to his friend Jehan Ranier… cheese soufflé!
Every French village has its own unique cheese recipe. Some varieties are more fortunate – the whole world knows about them, and they show off on the windows of supermarkets, while others have no names. It’s not about that. The fact is that cheese in France is not just food. It is tradition, art, science, religion.
But we are not French and, unfortunately, we know today about cheeses quite a few.
This article will help expand your ideas.
About the benefits of cheese
What does it take to make cheese? The answer is simple – milk. The technology for obtaining the food of the gods (yes, they ate cheese on Olympus: they knew a lot about healthy and tasty food!) has not changed over the past 4000 years. With the help of sourdough, milk is allowed to curdle and thicken. The resulting mass is separated from the whey, processed in a special way, shaped. Now it remains only to wait until the product “ripens”. So cheese is very simple. The complexity of cheese making is in the details. It will depend on them what kind and taste the cheese will turn out as a result. And do not hesitate – cheese makers are able to please any gourmet.
According to the International Dairy Federation catalogue, there are about 500 types of this product in the world. And there are at least 4000 varieties. Among the French, it is divided into several classes.
Home, Cottage, Mozzarella, Ricotta. They taste a bit like cottage cheese. They are practically not kept: a day or two – and the cheese is ready.
Edamer, Gouda, Oltermani, Cheddar, Mimolet, Russian – a hard crust on the outside, a dense appetizing mass inside. ripen cheeses about a year: they are put under oppression, periodically salted, turned over and brushed.
Emmental, Parmesan, Gruyere, Maasdam, Soviet, Swiss. They are made from evening milk mixed with fresh milk. The cheese mass is not only pressed, but before that it is also heated. Appetizing holes are a characteristic feature of cheeses of this variety.
Marual, Munster, Limburgsky, Dorogobuzhsky. During the ripening process, the cheese is washed with salt or mineral water, even champagne. The crust from this acquires a reddish tint, the taste becomes spicy, even sharp, the cheese spirit is strong.
Delicious Rambol, Fondue, o’Raesin (with raisins inside), Shabziger (with clover), democratic “Friendship” and “Wave”. Cheese of one or more varieties is slowly melted into a cauldron with vegetable fats, preservatives, flavorings, which does not add to its usefulness. This is a minus. Long shelf life is a plus. Processed cheese often comes with different fillings: spices nuts, mushrooms, ham.
The benefits of cheese
You have probably heard that cheese is a nutritious and easy to consume product that is good for health. It’s true. It is about 1/3 protein, 1/3 fat, and 1/3 water., in the “dry residue” – biologically active organic compounds. In addition, it retains all the valuable properties of the original product, and even in a concentrated form. So, in 100 g of cheese there are as many proteins, fats, vitamins and microelements as in 1.25 liters of milk.
Cheese can replace meat in the diet. Therefore, it is so loved by vegetarians and monks – it was they who invented the recipes for the most delicious varieties (Brie, Camembert, Roquefort). This product supplies the body with the necessary proteins – an important source of energy and the main material from which elastic muscles, healthy cells and tissues are built. Tasty A 200-gram piece will fully satisfy the body’s daily need for animal proteins.
Fatty acids found in cheese reduce the risk of cancer. Their content varies from 60 to 4% depending on the variety, and calories – from a frightening 560 to a completely innocent 99. However, scientists have found that natural fermentation of fresh milk affects fats for the better – only part of them is absorbed by the intestines, the rest is excreted from the body. So, if you are afraid for your figure, choose a low-calorie, low-fat cheese like Homemade or Cottage.
B vitamins – an inexhaustible source of energy, a well-groomed appearance, a healthy nervous system.
Vitamin A responsible for skin rejuvenation.
Vitamin D helps the body absorb minerals.
Zinc stimulates sexual activity.
Phosphorus ensures the normal functioning of the muscles.
Calcium – life without fractures and caries. If its reserves are dwindling, then the body in retaliation begins to produce the hormone calcitriol, which promotes the growth of adipose tissue, say researchers from the University of Tennessee.
Tyramine. The presence of this amino acid in a wonderful product is just an unfortunate side effect. Some people get headaches from tyramine. Moreover, most often, such a reaction accompanies hard, well-aged cheeses, such as Cheddar. Fortunately, “cheese migraine” is a medical rarity.
But here they just don’t exist. And sugar, despite the sweetish aftertaste inherent in many varieties, is also absent. Lactic acid bacteria do an excellent job with milk sugar, processing it into lactic acid.
And finally, a few recipes dishes french cuisine, whose main ingredient is cheese.
90 g sifted flour
180 g of water
120 g hard cheese (in France, Tomme de Savoie cheese is more common)
45 g margarine
2 medium eggs
1 tablespoon milk
salt, white pepper
Cooking: 15 minutes
Baking time: 25 min
Crack the eggs into two separate bowls. At the same time, separate from the yolk of the second egg about a third in a saucer. Grind the cheese on a large grater. Pour water into a saucepan, salt and pepper. Add margarine chunks. Put on fire. When the margarine is melted, remove the pan from the heat and pour the sifted flour into it (all at once). Stir quickly with a wooden spoon. Put the pan back on the heat and continue to stir the dough for 4-5 minutes without letting it stick to the walls. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Pour in the eggs one at a time, then add the cheese. Grease and flour a baking sheet. Divide the dough into 12 pieces and spread on a baking sheet. Add 1 tablespoon of milk to the remaining yolk, stir and coat the pieces of dough so that they are browned. Put in the oven, heated to a temperature of 210 degrees for 25 minutes. Then turn off the oven and open the oven lid slightly so that the balls cool down gradually.
400g morbier cheese (can be replaced with any press cheese)
1 long French baguette
1 liter of milk
a pinch of ground sweet red pepper
a pinch of grated nutmeg
Cut cheese and bread into thin slices. Oil the mold. Layer on bread and cheese. Separately, beat the eggs, gradually pour in the boiling milk. Salt, pepper, add nutmeg and paprika. Fill the charlotte with this mixture. After 10 minutes, when the bread swells, throw a few pieces of butter on top and place in a hot oven (210 degrees) for 40 minutes.
1.5 kg potatoes
600 g cantal cheese (any press cheese can be an alternative)
3 art. spoons of sour cream
1 garlic clove
75 g butter
Boil the peeled potatoes in salted water. Drain the water, make a puree. Add butter, put on a slow fire, mix. Enter crushed garlic, gradually add chopped cheese. Stir with a spatula without removing from heat. Add sour cream, salt and pepper. Continue stirring until thickened. Serve on hot plates with grilled sausage or roast pork.
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