The kinds of cheese available to consumers are from different parts of the world. Approximately, there are over 500 different cheeses in existence. There are several criteria used to differentiate these cheeses, like aging time, manufacture method, fat content, the kind of milk used and the texture of the cheese.
Here are the some of the different kinds of cheese.
Soft cheese is the kind that you can use on bread and crackers. They spread like butter and they are creamy in texture. These kinds of cheese are not used for other purposes besides this, although some claim that they are also excellent in salads. These types should be consumed immediately as their high moisture content could attract molds more quickly compared to other cheeses.
Examples of soft cheeses are:
Boursault – This is a ripened creamy cheese blend that is best served at room temperature.
Brie – Among the different kinds of cheese, this is perhaps one of the most popular. It is best served warm, and you can eat the rind.
Camembert – This is also a popular cheese type used on hot bread.
Semi-soft cheeses have high moisture content, and are commonly used for cooking. These can be used on sandwiches because they are sufficiently flexible to keep their shape when cut into pieces and added into a sandwich. Some semi-soft cheeses are considered medium-hard, although this classification is subjective. Some examples are Gruyere, Gouda, Edam, Cantal and Emmental. The soft texture can sometimes be attributed to the presence of bacteria in the cheese, which provide the characteristic flavour and aroma.
The kinds of cheese that are perfect for cooking are often of the hard variety. One good example of this is cheddar, which is an English cheese. In making this cheese, the curd is cut into neat sections and then heated. Aging of these kinds of cheese could take six months at least, and some need to be kept for longer.
Many cheeses are made locally in various places and are sometimes known as exotic cheeses. For instance, goat cheese has many versions depending on the country of origin. The same goes for the kinds of cheeses made from different types of milk.
Here are some examples of the kinds of cheese that became well-known worldwide from their local origins.
Edam is a familiar sight, especially during the holidays when people want only the best foods on their table. This started out as local cheese sold in markets in The Netherlands. Edam is sold as balls of cheese that are imported and stored until the next peak season. Edam is known to resist spoilage, but the texture of this cheese turns hard as time goes by.
Feta is a traditional cheese created in Greece to go with salads and bread. The cheese is made from brined curd. Feta is aged and is sold in blocks. When released from the package and served, the feta cheese crumbles. This cheese is said to go best with other Greek foods like olives, grape leaves and pita bread.