How do you describe “American Cheese”? – Gooey and creamy sauce dripping from pizza, burger or a salty and umami taste in our mouth. American cheese is one of the greatest culinary gift of America bestowed upon the world. Whether it is the Nacho cheese dip sauce, morning eggs, grilled cheese or our beloved burger, American cheese is the key ingredient. American cheese melts so very well with the burger patties that it is considered one of the best cheese for burgers. It is available in the market in various brands like Kraft Singles, Velveeta, Borden and Pure Dairy in Australia.
What is American cheese?
American cheese is processed cheese made from a blend of milk and some additives. It is orange, yellow or white with a mild and salty taste. It is known for its very low melting points. It comes either in individual slices from dairy case or sliced off the rectangular block at the deli counter. There are many kinds of cheeses produced in America like Bent River, Humboldt Fog, Cougar Gold cheese, and Mold Sleeper. They are all good cheeses, but they are not the “American Cheese”- the kind you get in the individual plastic wrappers. It is also commonly known as “American slice” or “American single.”
History of American cheese
Processed cheese was invented over 100 years ago in Switzerland. It was created to reduce cheese waste. The scraps of various batches of cheese were melted together to create a new batch of cheese. In 1916 Canadian-American entrepreneur James L. Kraft perfected the technique in the US. It was patented and started manufacturing as the first commercially available slice processed cheese.
Ingredients of Processed cheese
American cheese is made of pasteurized cow’s milk. Milk is pasteurized to destroy any harmful organisms. From a recent study, it has demonstrated that pasteurized milk is just as nutritious as raw milk. But it may differ in taste and texture. Asides from a combination of cheeses, American cheese can contain water, salt, artificial colors, flavorings, texture enhancers, mold inhibitors and emulsifying agents-substances that is soluble in fat and water to mix and become a stable. Some of the emulsifying agent used in cheese are sodium citrate, sodium phosphate, monosodium phosphate, etc. One of the biggest features of American cheese is the melt. The use of emulsifiers in processed cheese lets it melt smoothly and uniformly when heated.
The appeal of American cheese
American cheese is known for its flexibility to use in a wide array of dishes. It can be used as a substitute for sauce or as the main ingredient for the culinary dishes. American is the cheese which put cheese in the Cheeseburger. It is only cheese for the Cheeseburger. The combination of the creamy feel of cheese and savory taste of meat in the burger is a perfect match. American cheese has a mild flavor which does not dominate the flavor of the burger; rather it enhances the taste of the burger. The easiness of eating a burger with high melt cheese is the reason for everyone’s guilty pleasure for fatty food. With our innate affinity toward the creamy, fatty treat, American cheese will continue to reign supreme in our kitchen as well as the heart.
About the Author:
Rosemary Kobe is a housewife who loves to play with her two little twin-toddlers at home, read everything that comes her way related to gastronomy and is an amateur cook that devotes most of her time to cooking a range of dishes for her family and friends to try.