There’s more than one reason to smile when you say cheese this month. Cheese Lovers Day is very much an excuse to celebrate cheese by indulging in all things dairy. Whether you slice, dice, grate or melt your favourite variety, Cheese Lovers Day is an opportunity to embrace the squidgy, squeaky or stringy by consuming a veritable smorgasbord of cheese.
You Gouda Know
The history of cheese is still very much unclear as its production predates recorded history. There is evidence of cheese making dating back to 5,500 BC in Poland, however it may have originated in Asia, the Middle East or even in the Sahara.
It is thought that cheese making was discovered accidentally when transporting milk using animal’s stomachs as a vessel. Cow, sheep and goats stomachs contain rennet which helps to separate the solid curds and liquid whey.
Many modern cheese are made using different methods, using enzymes extracted from mould to create the same effect and these varieties of cheese are vegetarian.
The key to cheese addiction is an ingredient called casein which produces opiates called casomorphins, apparently responsible for additive eating behaviours.
Don’t Feel Blue
There are good health benefits to including cheese in your diet though, the high calcium content helps to strengthen teeth and bones and it also includes a number of vitamins including B6, B12, A, D E and K.
The promotional and educational body for cheese, part of Dairy UK, is called the British Cheese Board (could it have been named anything else), which educates consumers on the variety of British cheeses available and raises awareness of cheese as part of a healthy and balanced diet. There are currently over 700 British cheeses made in the UK.
So, from breakfast to supper, if you’re a true cheese lover, you’ll know that cheese goes with every meal. However, to truly celebrate in style, why not put cheese at the very heart of your plate for Cheese Lovers Day and here are just some of our suggestions on how:
Cheese Toasty – with ham or by itself, absolute gooey goodness
Cheese Board – the easiest to prepare, just add crackers
Baked Camembert – ready in 30 minutes and paired with warm, fresh, crusty bread
Fondue – dipped with bread sticks, pretzels or raw vegetables, anything goes
Nachos with Melted Cheese – just add jalapenos, guacamole, salsa and sour cream
Breaded Cheese – served with a sweet jam or sauce such as cranberry
Greek Salad – the healthiest option, mix chunks of Feta with tomatoes, cucumber, olives and onions