Many people and cultures consider being a true gastronomic delight. It is a food very rich in proteins of high biological quality and essential minerals for the body such as phosphorus or calcium, so it can be part of any healthy diet.
It is a fresh or matured product, solid or semi-solid, obtained from the coagulation of milk (either cow, sheep, goat, buffalo, or a mixture thereof) and subsequent separation of the whey. Its elaboration is an ancient tradition and each country has a different type of cheese since the way of making it and the consistency vary from one region to another. The pairing between wines and cheeses is one of the best ways to enhance both elements.
What Are The Best Known Types Of Cheese?
There are different types of cheese, which differ from each other in the way they are made or the time they remain in maturation. Depending on the maturation process, they can be fresh or mature cheeses. The different textures depend on the type of curing, a cured cheese usually has a rather hard texture, especially if the type of milk is from sheep, and those with a soft or creamier texture are usually made with cow’s milk, which is generally gentler.
For example, fresh cheeses have a very soft texture, while blue cheeses have a semi-soft texture or a semi-hard or hard texture that is perfect for grating or au gratin. There are more than 2,000 varieties of cheese around the world, but the ones we name below are the best known:
It is typical of Italian cuisine and is usually made with buffalo milk. This cheese is quite fatty and is used both fresh (in salads) and soft or dry. Its best-known use is for the manufacture of pizzas, where it is used gratin to a gratin or placed on the dough before it is baked. It has fewer flavors compared to other cheeses, but its soft texture makes it an ideal ingredient to combine in many cooking recipes.
Blue cheese (such as Saint Agur) can be made with cow’s, sheep’s or goat’s milk. It owes its color (which varies between blue and greenish-gray) to the presence of molds derived from a fungus. It has a strong smell and flavor and its texture is creamy, so it is used as a spread or to make sauces, which combine very well with meat.
It is originally from Somerset, a county in England, although it is currently made all over the world. It is a hard cheese made from cow’s milk that needs one or two years to mature, although it can be sold after 3 months. The more cured it is, the more powerful its flavor and color will be.
It is named after the Dutch city where it is made. It has a mild flavor, light yellow in color, and with some small and irregular holes. When it is very ripe it can be served cold and eaten neat. If it is still young, it is more advisable to cut it into slices or grate it and gratin it. Combines with beer and fruity wines.
It is one of the most famous Italian cheeses consumed all over the world; it has a hard and granular consistency. It is mainly served grated on top of other foods and can be eaten both raw and au gratin. Where it acquires more color and flavor. It is made with pasteurized cow’s milk and is one of the cheeses with the highest percentage of calcium.
It is a typical French cheese. It is made with coagulated sheep’s milk and its texture is semi-soft and with green spots due to fungi. It has a salty and complex flavor that is softened by spreading it on bread.
It is the best-known and most consumed Greek cheese. It is a mixture of goat’s milk and sheep’s milk and has a salty and spicy flavor. It is perfect to add to pizzas, salads or cakes. A very versatile traditional cheese, due to its different textures depending on the ripening: it can be creamy or extremely dry. Pairs perfectly with olive oil, nuts, or beer.
It is originally from northern Italy, coming from the Lombardy region. It is a fresh cheese obtained by making milk cream, cream, and citric acid or acetic acid. Its texture is soft and very creamy and it has a very sweet flavor. This is why it is used in typical Italian desserts such as tiramisu and cheesecakes.