Cheese Stretchability

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Cheese stretchability

Abstract

Stretchability is an essential textural characteristic for cheeses in a wide variety of foods – most notably pizza. A common method for measuring stretchability is for a technician or sensory panelist to lift melted cheese from the surface of the pizza with a fork and to provide the cheese with a stretchability score. The extensibility of cheese is typically rated from 1 through 10, with less extensible, ‘stronger’ cheeses getting the lower scores. The fork method is extremely subjective, and along with many of the other instrumental methods attempted over the last 12 years it is notoriously variable. The variability comes from inconsistent sample preparation, temperature management, inconsistent operator pulling speeds, poor grip designs, and in awkward definitions of exactly what behaviors the scorers should judge (initial resistance, later resistance, total distance, stringiness, etc). Because of the method’s variability and subjectivity cheese producers and pizza makers need an objective instrumental, sensitive, and repeatable test method. Texture Technologies has developed the TA-426 Cheese Stretchability Rig to precisely and repeatably measure cheese stretchability.