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为什么蓝纹奶酪上的霉菌可以吃?

为什么蓝纹奶酪上的霉菌可以吃?

原作者:Yoav Perry, 奶酪师傅

大体上,人们讨厌食物上的霉菌,是因为有这样一个认识——发霉意味着食物已经不新鲜了。另外,我们还认定,发霉的食物吃起来味道不一样,因为它已经开始发酵,通常外观、质地和气味都会随之改变。很多霉菌虽然对身体无害,但是味道不好。有害的霉菌会产生真菌毒素或黄曲霉素。这些毒素能影响我们的呼吸系统,有时还致癌。但不是所有霉菌都会产生这些毒素。

双地干酪青霉灰绿青霉,这两种青霉菌在生产奶酪时都不会产生上面提到的毒素。酸度、盐度、湿度、密度、温度和氧气量组合出的环境,远远偏离了这两种霉菌产生毒素的条件。事实上,这一点对于几乎所有奶酪里的霉菌都是如此,因此在过去9000年里人们才会认为奶酪是安全的发了霉的食物。奶酪不仅食用安全,而且还是健康的食物(双地干酪青霉和灰绿青霉天生就能杀菌,还能抑制病原体。此外,我们的身体会利用多种体外菌群帮助消化、发育和免疫)。

不幸的是,食品生产商对过去好几代人不停灌输他们的理念,让消费者(抛弃人类9000多年的智慧结晶)以为,看起来颜色鲜亮、质地均匀,真空包装还打着大大的商标的人工制品就是安全食品。发霉的、粗糙的、形状乱七八糟的、不协调的,或者说,天然的东西,则是不卫生的小家庭作坊的出品,质量得不到保证。但如今我们都明白对于传统工艺食品,这样的说法不对。而且我们尽量不碰那些高度加工的食物替代品。

青霉菌对奶酪有特殊的效果。青霉菌能极大程度加速两个过程:蛋白质水解(即蛋白质的分解),能使奶酪更有奶油般丝滑的质地(特别是在靠近青霉菌生长的部分)以及脂肪分解,能给奶酪带来浓郁的辛辣风味。奶油般的质地跟辛辣的风味相互碰撞,又合为一体给食客带来一场激动人心的味觉、口感和嗅觉的盛宴。往往还配以甜牛奶或坚果奶以及大量的盐(蓝纹奶酪含盐量是其他奶酪的两倍)来平衡味道。这种搭配独一无二,跟其他任何食物都不同!

制作工序

在我接着回答问题的第二部分(“我们能自己在家做蓝纹奶酪吗?”)之前,我们先简单看看蓝纹奶酪的制作工序:

  • 青霉菌只在奶酪成熟过程的一段时间内生长。青霉菌需要酸碱平衡的环境,所以奶酪刚做好还很酸的时候,它无法生长。它依靠奶酪含有的充足的营养物质生长,所以也不能在奶酪开始成熟后等太久。
  • 霉菌的孢子极易感染其他奶酪,因此一般都不会在这段敏感时期把蓝纹奶酪跟其他种类的奶酪放在一起成熟。
  • 通常在一开始会用一根粗针头刺穿奶酪,这样氧气就能流进奶酪的裂缝,霉菌才会开始生长。每七到十四天工人就会重复这一步骤,直到足够多的青霉菌长出来。
  •  这时,奶酪被铝箔包着,以免青霉菌过分生长。然后奶酪立刻被挪到低温的地方,剩下的时间就是奶酪成熟的过程,在这一过程中,蛋白质和脂肪分解,奶酪拥有了浓郁而多层次的质地、口味和香气。有些蓝纹奶酪在青霉菌停止生长后,成熟期要好几个月。

在自己家里做蓝纹奶酪

要在自己家做蓝纹奶酪可能很困难。你能买到的奶酪通常都成熟了,甚至熟透了不会再变化,缺少足够的营养物质支持新来的青霉菌生长。太迟了,奶酪外皮上那些占好地盘的霉菌和酵母的挤压,对于青霉菌来说已经很难抵抗。

虽然这么说,但是也不是不可能做到。你只需要找一块刚做好的还没开始成熟的奶酪,要很少或没有外皮。要足够湿润,能支持青霉菌的生长,但也要足够坚韧,才能承受毛衣针的穿洞。要做蓝纹奶酪,你就需要青霉菌(可以买到,也可以从发霉的黑麦面包或另一块蓝纹奶酪上刮下来,或者干脆拿个搅拌器扔一块蓝纹奶酪、弄一点水、捏一点盐,捣碎了就行)。步骤是这样的:先把毛衣针或烤肉扦消毒杀菌,然后把它蘸一点青霉菌。用它刺穿奶酪的两边,保证奶酪里有足够的青霉菌种和畅通的气道。把奶酪立起来,这样空气就能通过它。开始时最佳温度是55°F或13°C(冰酒器的温度),湿度要高,90%–95%。等到青霉菌长得够多了(要花一到三周)就用铝箔包好挪到冰箱里再放几周或几个月。理论上这样就成了,但是蓝纹奶酪是考验细节的食物,很难搞。有很多要注意的细节,一个没弄好就失败了。

原文链接

英文原文:

Generally speaking, the aversion from mold in foods comes from the cognition that mold on fresh foods clearly indicates that they are no longer fresh. We also assume that food would not taste the same because a fermentation has began to take place -usually accompanied by change in appearance, texture and aroma of the food in question.  Many molds simply taste unpleasant yet are not problematic to our bodies. Dangerous moulds are those which produce mycotoxins and aflatoxins. These toxins may effect our respiratory system and in some cases even act as carcinogens. Not all molds produce these toxins.

Penicillium Roqueforti and Penicillium Glaucum which are the blue molds used for cheese, cannot produce these toxins in cheese. The combination of acidity, salinity, moisture, density, temperature and oxygen flow creates an environment that is far outside the envelope of toxin production range for these molds.  In fact, this is true for almost all molds in cheese, which is the reason that cheese has been considered a safe moldy food to eat over the past 9,000 years. Not only is it safe but it can also be healthy (P.Roqueforti and P.Glaucum have natural antibacterial properties and ability to over-take pathogens. Moreover, our bodies use a variety of wild flora for digestion, development and immune systems).

Unfortunately, mass food manufacturers have run relentless campaigns over the previous few generations to cause consumers to conclude (beyond their 9,000 years of wisdom) that plasticy looking bright-colored food-like substances with homogenous texture, in a vacuum-pack and big brand logo = equals controlled/safe product. Anything moldy, rustic, irregular, inconsistent or natural = equals unsanitary conditions, primitive family farming, or uncontrolled production.  Today we understand that this is not the case as we go back to traditional and artisan foods -and stay away from highly processed industrial food replacements.

Blue Molds – have a particularly unique effect on cheese. They accelerate two processes dramatically: Proteolysis (breakdown of proteins), which causes the cheese to take on extra-creamy texture (especially in proximity to the blue mold veins), and lipolysis (breakdown of fats), which makes up the tangy, spicy, sharp and strong flavor. The creamy texture stands up to the sharp flavor and together they bring upon an exciting flavor/texture/aroma profile, which is often further balanced against sweet/nutty milk and lots of salt (Blue cheeses typically contain twice the salt of other cheeses).  This combination is so unique – it is unlike any other food!

The Process:
Before going into the second part of the question (“can one “bleu-ify” other cheeses at home?“) let’s just understand the process in a nutshell:

  • Blue mold grows only during a specific time frame within the aging period. It needs a balanced acidity, so it can’t grow on the cheese if is too young and still acidic. It also relies on nutrients which are still readily available in the cheese -so it can’t be too late when the cheese is already aged.
  • The mold spores are highly contagious to other cheeses so blue cheeses typically would not share aging space with other cheeses during this sensitive period.
  • The cheese is usually pierced with a thick needle first so that oxygen will flow into its crevices and kickstart the growth. The cheesemaker would repeat this process every 7-14 days until sufficient growth of blue has taken place.
  • At this point, the cheese is wrapped in foil to prevent the blue from growing out of control. The cheese is then immediately moved to cooler temperature and aged for the remaining period, allowing the processes of proteolysis and lipolysis to take place and develop deep and complex texture, flavor and aroma.  In some cases this last stage could take up several months past the development and stoppage of the blue mold.

Bluing Cheese at Home:
Trying to blue an unsuspecting cheese at home may prove difficult. The cheese you purchase is often already aged, ripe and stable. It lacks sufficiant nutrients to support the growth of new blue mold. Competition from other well-established molds and yeasts in the rind may be too much for the blue to overcome at such late stage.

Having said that, this is not an impossible experiment. One just needs to find a cheese that is very young and has little or no rind. It must be moist enough to support the growth of this mold, yet it firm enough to enable the puncture a hole through it with a knitting needle. To “blue” it, one would need blue mold (can be purchased or scraped off moldy rye bread or another blue cheese, or simply pulverize a piece of blue cheese in a blender with a little bit of water and a pinch of salt). The procedure would be to sanitize a knitting needle or metal skewer and dip it in the mold to “contaminate” it with blue. Use it to pierce the cheese through from both ends to assure ample mold seeding and clear air passages. Set the cheese on its side so air can flow through it. It is best to start it at about 55°F or 13°C (temperature of a wine cooler) with high humidity (90%-95%). When the growth of blue is sufficient (1-3 weeks) wrap with foil and move to the fridge for a few more weeks or months. In theory this should work but blue cheese are finicky and tricky to get right. Many variables may still fail it.


 

为什么蓝纹奶酪上的霉菌可以吃?
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