Cottage cheese is a fresh, uncured cheese that consists of soft, white milk curds mixed with a creamy liquid. This cheese has been made in Europe for centuries and has been known by many names. Two examples are “smearcase”, which is derived from the German term for “spreading cheese”, and “bonnyclabber”, which is Irish for “thick milk” and dates back to at least 1630. The name “cottage cheese” wasn’t commonly used until around 1850. This term may have originated because the simple cheese was usually made in cottages from any milk leftover after making butter. Today it is a popular cheese eaten throughout Europe and the United States. One notable cottage cheese lover was Richard M. Nixon, who was notorious for eating his cheese covered with ketchup.

The cheese is made from skim milk, either fresh or reconstituted from dry milk. The milk is helped to curdle by adding bacteria or an enzyme called rennet. The curdled milk separates into small solid curds and liquid whey. The curds are then gently heated and the whey is removed. These curds are then usually mixed with a creamy liquid made from cream or milk.

Cottage cheese is available in many varieties. First, the cheese can be sold as small curd or large curd. Small curd cheese is made up of smaller curds that are rather firm because they have been heated for a longer period of time. Large curd cheese is made up of larger, softer curds. Most cottage cheese is “creamed”, meaning a cream mixture has been added to the curds. Lowfat versions use a mixture made with less fat while dry cottage cheese, also known as un-creamed, has none of this mixture. Additionally, most of these varieties can be sold as either salted or unsalted. Some companies in the United States have also started selling cottage cheese in a variety of flavors or topping the cheese with a fruit mixture.

Fresh cottage cheese does not keep as well as aged cheeses. It will last in the fridge for about a week. It is delicious eaten plain and tastes good with both vegetables and fruit. The cheese also can be used in savory baked dishes such as lasagne or in sweet desserts such as cheesecake. Crepes or blintzes can be filled with cottage cheese. Cottage cheese also makes a simple topping for cooked pasta.

Cottage cheese is lower in fat than most other cheeses and is rather easy to digest. Even though it is a cheese, it contains a lower amount of calcium per serving compared to milk or other cheeses. However, it does contain a high level of protein, about 16 grams per serving. Cottage cheese is often a staple of bodybuilders because of its high protein to fat ratio.



http://www.ag.fvsu.edu/teletips/food_buying/1005.htm
http://www.netrition.com/cgi/healthnotes.cgi?ContentID=1724002
http://www.word-detective.com/110598.html

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