Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/16/2010
Publication Date: 4/1/2011
Citation: Tunick, M.H. 2011. Cheese flavors: chemical origin and detection. In: Foster, R.D., editor. Cheese: Types, Nutrition and Consumption. Hauppage, NY: Nova Publishers. p. 207-220.
Interpretive Summary: n/a
Technical Abstract: The hundreds of flavor compounds found in cheese arise from the proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates it contains. Flavor compounds are products of diverse reactions that occur in milk during processing, in curd during manufacture, and in cheese during storage, and are detected by a number of methods. Acids, alcohols, aldehydes, esters, ketones, and lactones may all form in cheese depending on the variety. The different pathways of flavor compound formation result from the feed or grass consumed by the animals, enzymes present in the starter culture microorganisms, any adjunct cultures or molds that have been added, the action of the coagulant, and the time and temperature of aging. An assortment of techniques for extracting and identifying flavors has been developed over the years. Gas chromatography and sensory analysis are used to examine these compounds. This chapter will cover the origins of cheese flavors and the ways that scientists can examine them.