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  • Alright folks, today were talking the

  • dos and donts of one of the world’s best foods, the grilled cheese sandwich.

  • And yes, weve got the science to back it up.

  • There are so, so many different types

  • of cheese out there, but there’s one

  • type you want when it comes to grilled

  • cheese - the kind that’s nice and stretchy.

  • So then how does chemistry get you that perfect stretchy, gooey grilled cheese?

  • (Reactions SPLASH INTRO!)

  • Time for a primer on cheese.

  • The first step of cheesemaking

  • is to form curds out of milk.

  • Milk is 90% water, plus a mix of casein and

  • whey proteins, lactose, calcium, and fats.

  • Casein proteins float around in milk in

  • tiny molecular clumps called micelles

  • that refuse to stick together because

  • they have same charge on the outside.

  • These micelles hold around 2/3rds of

  • the calcium in milk, and believe it

  • or not, calcium is the key to the perfect grilled cheese.

  • To form curds, bacteria and enzymes

  • are added to milk to make it coagulate,

  • or go from a liquid to a solid or semisolid state.

  • The bacteria converts lactose into lactic acid

  • to drop the pH, which eliminates

  • the charge of the casein micelles to help them stick together.

  • Enzymes called rennet are

  • used to speed the process up.

  • Once the curds are formed, the whey and

  • excess moisture is drained, and the little

  • clumps can then be heated, bathed in salt

  • water, and pressed together to meet the

  • specifications of different types of cheese.

  • Once pressed, the cheese is left to age

  • from days to years depending on the style.

  • The longer the cheese sits, the more

  • lactose is converted into lactic acid, and the lower the pH.

  • The lower the pH, thesharperthe cheese.

  • Remember that folks, because with grilled

  • cheese, that pH level has a huge effect

  • on the calcium found inside, and in turn, the texture when heated.

  • If protein is the structural backbone

  • of cheese, than calcium is the rebar

  • that reinforces the backbone.

  • It’s what grips all of the casein

  • molecules together to form the micelles.

  • Melty, stretchy cheeses have casein

  • proteins that can break away and go with

  • the flow and what that takes is a lower

  • pH which lets the calcium ditch its job

  • of holding all the casein together.

  • That means more proteins break out of

  • their cages to interact with the fats

  • and moisture in the cheese, to make everything flow

  • together as one big, lovely, gooey mess.

  • But if the pH is too low the cheese will

  • release all of its oils when heated,

  • leaving a curdly, clumpy disaster.

  • The secret to getting the perfect cheese

  • for a grilled cheese sandwich is to find

  • one with the right pH to perfectly balance

  • out the calcium and protein structure.

  • Cheeses with a pH range between 5.3 and

  • 5.5 are right on the money, and here’s

  • a handful of perfect examples.

  • Here’s a Reactions Grilled Cheese Pro tip:

  • If youre in the cheese aisle confused

  • about all the different types of cheddar,

  • go with the mild one, it’s gonna have

  • the texture youre looking for,

  • unlike its broken down, sharp older siblings.

  • Oh and what about those perfect yellow

  • squares of processedAmericancheese?

  • This type of cheese is made by melting

  • together two or more different cheeses

  • like colby and cheddar, and adding an

  • emulsifier such as sodium or potassium

  • phosphate, which limits the amount of

  • calcium holding everything together,

  • all the while increasing the pH, sometimes up to 5.8.

  • This makes for a highly meltable cheese

  • product with an exceptionally mild flavor.

  • Okay folks, so now you get the picture,

  • so get the darn cheese already.

  • If any of you out there have any food

  • related questions, post them down in

  • the comments for us but if youre

  • hungry for more food chem, check out

  • this video on the chemistry of pizza.

  • Today’s episode was inspired by an

  • absolutely amazing book called the

  • kitchen as laboratory, check out the

  • first chapter by Jennifer Kimmel,

  • The chemistry of a grilled cheese sandwich.

  • A link’s down in the description,

  • get yourself a copy! Thumbs up,

  • subscribe, well see you again soon.

Alright folks, today were talking the

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B2 US cheese grilled cheese grilled calcium sandwich milk

The Science of the Perfect Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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    羅紹桀 posted on 2016/03/18
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