- Description of feta
- Description of Brynza
- Differences between Brynza cheese and Feta
- Types and varieties of Brynza
- Useful properties of Brynza
- Taste qualities of Brynza
- Cooking applications
- There are many tastes, but Feta is always one
- Useful properties of Feta
- Feta – cheese for “Greek salad” and not only
Brynza and feta are two completely different cheeses, and they differ both in the technology of preparation and in taste, appearance and consistency. Let’s talk about all the differences in order.
Description of feta
Let’s start with the origin of the cheese. Brynza is a Greek cheese made from a mixture of sheep and goat milk. We repeat: Greek cheese. Greek. Greek. And only Greece has the right to produce Brynza according to the classic recipe. And everything that is sold in our supermarkets from Ukrainian manufacturers is not Brynza, but only its pitiful likeness.
Description of Brynza
Brynza is a pickled cheese spread throughout Ukraine and known outside its borders in Romania, Moldova, Slovakia, Bulgaria and other European countries. Cheese has a lot in common with Turkish peynir (more precisely, beyaz peynir, which translates as “white cheese”).
The appearance and distribution of Brynza cheese on the territory of eastern Europe is associated with the Wallachians – this is how the ancestors of the East Romanesque peoples (Romanians, Moldavians, Istro-Romanians and others) are collectively called. But the invention of her legend is attributed to an Arabian merchant who set out on a journey with a wineskin filled with milk, and then discovered instead of liquid a clot with an unusual taste.
Cheese is also mentioned in Homer’s Odyssey, which confirms the ancient origin of this product. It is believed that this cheese has been made for over 7000 years.
Cheese can be made from milk from cows, buffaloes, sheep, goats or a mixture of different types of milk. During the preparation process, milk is fermented using rennet, or pepsin. The resulting curd is separated from the whey and placed in brine for maturation. For long-term aging, barrels are used in which Brynza cheese is stored under a press.
The body of the finished cheese has a color from white to yellowish, it can be either homogeneous or “laced” on the cut, or contain rare cavities of arbitrary shape. The taste and texture of Brynza cheese depends on the milk from which it is prepared, and the age – the duration of aging in the barrel.
Such cheese can ripen from a couple of days, and then it will be young and tender, up to 6-12 months, and then it will be spicy, piquant, salty. Goat cheese usually has the brightest smell. And the peculiarity of sheep’s milk cheese is its aftertaste, “biting” the tip of the tongue. It is explained by the enzyme content in milk.
Differences between Brynza cheese and Feta
The consistency of feta is smoother and creamier, while feta cheese is loose and resembles compressed cottage cheese. The two cheeses also differ in color: feta always has a snow-white hue, but brynza cheese can be either white or slightly yellowish.
Feta tastes spicy and slightly sour. But the taste of brynza cheese can change, since it all depends on the period of its aging in a special solution. The longer the brynza cheese lies in the brine, the more intense and pungent its taste. Sometimes it is quite salty and spicy.
Feta is sold and stored exclusively in brine. In this form, it is suitable for use for several months or even a year. But the shelf life of brynza cheese in brine is much shorter, only up to 60 days. And yes, brynza cheese can be stored without brine. However, very shortly: the cheese wrapped in foil or cling film should be eaten within a couple of weeks.
Another difference between feta cheese and Brynza is in their nutritional properties. Brynza contains a very large amount of sodium (which makes it very salty in taste), as well as sulfur, phosphorus and potassium. The consumption of feta brynza has a positive effect on the condition of the skin, teeth, vision and bone tissue, as well as on the activity of the digestive system.
But feta has a much higher content of protein, calcium, choline and vitamin A. This cheese reduces the level of cholesterol in the body and increases the protective functions of cells. In addition, feta helps fight food poisoning, strengthens the heart and immunity.
The calorie content of cheeses is also different: in feta there are one and a half times more calories than in brynza cheese. It turns out that, on the one hand, brynza cheese is less high in calories, which means that it is practically a dietary product. But on the other hand, brynza cheese is saltier and not suitable, for example, for people with cardiovascular diseases. And feta, due to its high calorie content, is not suitable for a diet.
Types and varieties of Brynza
Brynza cheese is different. It can be made from goat, sheep, cow or buffalo milk. Cheese Cheese Brynza from goat’s milk is the softest, and cheese from sheep’s milk has a granular structure. Raw materials can be pasteurized or unprocessed. If pasteurized milk is used, the cheese matures in 3 weeks. If the raw material is not processed in advance, then it should be kept in brine for two months.
Brynza cheese can be natural or with artificial additives. The natural product contains only milk, starter culture, lactic enzymes and salt. Artificially, preservatives can be added to it if the cheese is initially slightly salted.
Useful properties of Brynza
Brynza cheese is considered one of the healthiest cheeses. It contains vitamins PP, E, C, B, A, potassium, sodium, iron, fluorine, calcium, sulfur, phosphorus, magnesium. Unlike hard cheeses, Bryndza cheese contains more protein and much less fat. This property allows the use of this product in dietary nutrition.
100 grams of feta cheese contains a daily intake of calcium, which is important for strengthening bones and teeth. The content of fluoride and calcium makes this cheese useful for pregnancy, rickets, osteoporosis, and fractures. Cheese should be consumed by the elderly, as well as by diseases of the nervous system. If you eat this cheese regularly, your skin will become smoother and more elastic.
Taste qualities of Brynza
Since the process of making feta cheese includes ripening in brine, its taste is salty and juicy, reminiscent of fermented milk products. Sheep cheese tastes sharper, while cow milk cheese tastes more tender and creamy.
The longer the cheese ripens, the more salty it will taste.
In cooking Cheese Brynza is used as a separate product and is included in various dishes. This cheese is a popular snack in all Western European countries. It is served with main courses, serves as a filling for pies and sandwiches, adds a special taste to various salads, side dishes, soups and cereals. In salads and appetizers, Bryndza cheese goes well with fresh vegetables and light dressings.
In the national cuisine of Bulgarians there is a dish of brynza brynza baked in foil, sprinkled with red pepper and oiled. Another Bulgarian dish, patatnik, is made from feta cheese, potatoes, red pepper and eggs. Instead of bread, in Bulgaria, tortillas with this salty cheese are often used, and milinka, baked in an omelet with feta cheese, are popular for rural cuisine. From the first courses in this country, feta cheese is added to onion soup with beef broth. Red pepper is stuffed with this cheese and cottage cheese – this Bulgarian dish is called burek chushki.
- Slovak cuisine includes bryndza dumplings made from cheese, potatoes, lard, smoked pork and flour. In the Balkans, moussaka is prepared from feta cheese, minced meat, vegetables, yogurt and spices.
- In Slovakia, the Czech Republic and some Polish regions, a milk drink – žinčica is made from the whey left over from the production of feta cheese. Poles use this salty cheese as a filling for dumplings – boiled potato balls.
- The Carpathian cuisine also has several dishes with feta cheese. Buns with such a salty filling are called knyshi, and corn porridge served with cheese is called kuleshi.
- Ukrainian cuisine has a banosh side dish – it is made from feta cheese, corn grits, bacon or pork belly and sour cream.
- Serbs have a national dish called Ushtips. These are cutlets made from minced meat, brisket, feta cheese and spices.
- In the Caucasus, feta cheese is often added to various baked goods, for example, khychins, khachapuri, tsakharajin, flat bread, samsa.
- In Greek cuisine, there is a saganaki dish – this is Brynza cheese baked in foil with tomatoes, herbs and olives. Another Greek dish, Spanakopita, is a puff pastry pie stuffed with salted cheese, spinach and herbs. Patatopitta is made from feta cheese, hard cheese, potatoes and smoked sausage – a kind of casserole. In the national cuisine of the Greeks, there are many variations of feta cheese pies – such dishes are usually prepared in a rustic style,
- Brynza cheese is also popular among the French. It can be added to dishes such as ratatouille, milfay (baked goods), cocotte bread, open tarts.
- In Russian cuisine, feta cheese is added to cereals, salads, various pastries – cheesecakes, pies, pancakes, pizza.
- Grated cheese can be used when roasting meat, poultry or vegetables. Brynza cheese is well suited for making all kinds of casseroles, closed and open pies, omelets. It gives a special flavor to various sauces and dressings.
- Dishes that include feta cheese go well with potatoes, eggplant, garlic, onions, and wheat bread. The salinity of the cheese perfectly sets off the taste of these products.
- For its original taste and usefulness, Brynza cheese is valued by many nations. It is added to all kinds of dishes, prepared in various ways and consumed as a separate snack.
There are many tastes, but Feta is always one
Ideal feta is a cheese made from goat or sheep milk. He’s gentle. It has a deep white color, in which the presence of subtle cream shades is allowed. The aroma of Feta is rich, deeply curd, and its taste melts in the mouth, leaving a long milky, as if saturated with something elusive aftertaste.
Aged for at least three months, Feta has a fairly high fat content and a pleasant texture, which, despite its external fragility, does not allow the cheese to turn into a pasty mass, or to be freely spread like processed cheese on bread.
But all this is ideal. In fact, you can find as many as 3 varieties of feta, which have their own distinctive characteristics.
- Type 1 – this is, in fact, the original Feta.
- Type 2 – cheese, which is made according to the Feta principle, but it is based on cow’s milk. This technology allows you to preserve the famous structure, dense, but at the same time, crumbling, but naturally, changes the taste of the original product.
- Type 3 – cheese, which is prepared using all modern technologies (filtration, pasteurization, pressing, etc.). The result of this production is cheese, which, apart from the beautiful name Feta, has nothing to do with the original product.
The difference in the cooking technology and the original product determines not only the taste of Feta and its structure, but also the properties of this Greek cheese.
Useful properties of Feta
Original Feta is a balanced set of vitamins, micro and macro elements for the human body. This is a rather fatty cheese (up to 60% fat), which contains elements that can not only normalize the work of the gastrointestinal tract and liver, but also thoroughly cleanse the body of unwanted parasites, normalize hematopoiesis processes or get rid of the consequences of dysbiosis.
But only the original Feta product is endowed with such properties. Its varieties, due to the use of modern technologies, unfortunately, do not have such a healing effect and are simply a useful dairy product that can be consumed by everyone who has no contraindications to lactose.
Feta – cheese for “Greek salad” and not only
“Greek salad” is a very ancient and very useful invention of our ancestors. Today we can say that it has become a collective name, since its main principle – a combination of salted cheese, vegetables, herbs, herbs, olive oil and lemon – underlies many Mediterranean salads, an indispensable ingredient of which is Feta
But Greek cheese is not only good for this kind of salad. It goes well with absolutely all vegetables, including fermented ones – sauerkraut or pickled cabbage, cucumbers, tomatoes and fruits – pears, grapes
Feta is also tasty with bread – fresh or fried in the form of toasts. Or simply with wine, especially red.
Long ago conquered the world and pies with this cheese, where feta is used as a filling with Mediterranean or more familiar herbs – mint, spinach. By the same principle, Feta can often be found in filling for pizza or cheesecakes, stretching and other baked goods, which very favorably emphasizes its milky-salty taste.
You cannot do without this cheese and fish, to which it is served separately or as a side dish, in the form of the same salad. Or they prepare special fish pates, although in this case we are already talking about its varieties, since a beautiful cheese with a beautiful name is beautiful and original in itself and may not tolerate such a close proximity.