Are you a cheese lover? Me too! Here are 25 Interesting Facts about Cheese that you probably didn’t know before reading this!
Cheese is a highly integral part of the diet in most Western countries, and it has been eaten for a long period of time. Various civilizations have produced unique types of cheeses, even the ancient Egyptians and the ancient Greeks as well as Mesopotamia.
Today, many countries have excellent cheesemakers, but it’s most prominent in countries with lots of cattle or goats/sheep. To make this even more interesting, I want to challenge you and see how many of these cheese facts that you already know before reading this.
Cheese has been made for longer than 7000 years
There is no exact date of the invention of cheese, but the oldest findings date back some 7200 years to pottery in Croatia with evidence of cheesemaking. The oldest cheese ever found is 3200 years old, and it was found in the Saqqara necropolis.
It’s highly addictive
There are many studies that confirm that cheese is highly addictive, and it has some similarities to the effects of drugs. Cheese contains a chemical that can trigger opioid receptors in the human brain.
There are more than 2000 varieties of cheese worldwide
How many types of cheeses can you name without googling? In total there are more than 2000 varieties in the world, which means that it would take about 5.5 years if you tried one cheese per day.
This is one of the most fascinating facts about Cheese and it’s quite amazing how you can create so many varieties from animal milk.
Gouda is the most consumed popular type of cheese
Gouda is a semi-hard cheese made from cow’s milk in the Netherlands. It can be aged for various lengths which change both the texture and flavor. Gouda is the most popular cheese in the world, and you’ll find it in most countries around the world.
Lactose-intolerant people can eat cheese
Lactose-intolerant people are likely to get unpleasant symptoms while consuming milk, but cheese is usually fine because during the process much of the lactose is weighed off with the whey.
Also, when cheeses are being aged the bacteria is further breaking down the traces of lactose, which is basically a milk sugar.
There are various types of moldy cheese
Mold is not always favored when it comes to food, more often than not it’s a sign of a product going bad and becoming toxic for humans.
But cheese is an exception, and there are various types of moldy cheeses that are safely to consume, and they are often very healthy as well. Blue cheese is perhaps the most famous type of moldy cheese in addition to gorgonzola and Roquefort.
Certain cheese names are capitalized
All cheeses in the world which are named after a city or town have capitalized names. For example, Gouda is written with a capital G but mozzarella is typically not capitalized.
However, it won’t cause any confusion if you capitalize or not and you can safely write every type of cheese with lower cases.
Edam Cheese never goes bad
Edam is a Dutch cheese from North Holland, and it does not spoil, it only hardens as time goes by. This made Edam a popular product to bring on sea voyages and to remote colonies in the 14th and 18th centuries.
This is one of the many interesting facts about cheese!
The heaviest cheese ever produced weighed 57,518 pounds
A typical cheese is sold by the pound or kilo, but they are usually produced and packaged in larger cheese wheels. The heaviest cheese in the world weighed as much as 57,518 pounds and was produced by a Canadian cheesemaker.
Hard cheeses have a longer shelf life than soft cheeses
Hard cheeses can be aged and will have a longer shelf life compared to soft cheeses, even if the package has been opened. Some of the most popular hard cheeses are Parmigiano-Reggiano, Asiago D’allevo, Grana Padano, and Pecorino Romano.
Pule is the world’s most expensive cheese
You probably didn’t know that donkey cheese was the most expensive cheese in the world. It’s made in Serbia and is known as Pule. 1 Pound can be sold for as much as $600–$1,000.
The holes in Swiss cheese are a result of fermentation
The holes in Swiss cheese are a mystery to some, and some parents even lure their kids that it’s little mouses that have been eating.
This is of course not true, but instead, the holes are a result of the fermentation process where a bacteria releases carbon dioxide when consuming the lactic acid, which forms bubbles.
Fun facts about Cheese
- Moose cheese costs around $420 per pound, since each milking takes two hours, and must be done in complete silence
- Each American adult consumes an average of 33 pounds of cheese each year
- Vieux Boulogne is the smelliest cheese in the world
- Cheddar cheese is the most popular cheese in the United Kingdom
- The largest cheese sculpture weighs 691.27 kg (1,524 lb)
- Pizza Hut uses about 136 million kilograms (300 million pounds) of cheese annually
Cheese facts for kids
- Cheese is made from milk and it can be from various types of animals such as cows, goats, sheep, buffalo, camels, yak and many more
- There are various criteria to classify cheeses depending on texture, age, production, etc.
- Some cheeses have added flavors or even berries/jam
- Eating cheese 30 minutes before sleep has shown in studies that it can help sleep
- Cheese is most flavorsome when eaten at room temperature
- There is a national cheese day, the 4th of June
- It is fully packed with vitamins and essential nutrients such as protein
General information about Cheese
Cheesemaking have spread worldwide, and while some countries have specialized in certain types of cheeses, some types have become a favorite globally as well, such as Gouda, cheddar, feta, Edam, Roquefort, Danish blue cheese, Mozzarella, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino, etc.
Cheese is made from milk and forms when the milk protein casein coagulates. The most common types of milk used for cheesemaking are milk from cows, buffalo, goat, sheep, and yak.
The texture and flavor are highly dependable of the origin of the milk and what the animals have been eating. It also depends on bacteria, pasteurization, butterfat, processing and how long it has been aged for.
Furthermore, it’s possible to add acids and other ingredients to make a certain type of cheese.
How many of these Cheese facts did you know already? Leave a comment below!