Web Date: March 11, 2009
Gouda Cheese Surrenders Its Secrets
Scientists in Germany have identified key compounds that contribute to the complex flavor and texture of aged Gouda, a mild cheese of Dutch origin. Food chemist Thomas Hofmann of the Technical University of Munich, Weihenstephan, and colleagues made their discovery with the assistance of a group of committed taste panelists, who underwent weekly training sessions for at least two years in order to help with the research. Hofmann???s team also wielded gel permeation chromatography, high-performance liquid chromatography, and mass spectrometry in their quest to isolate and identify the compounds that enhance Gouda???s character.
The researchers compared the composition of a "young" Gouda cheese that had ripened for only four weeks with that of a "mature" Gouda that had ripened for 44 weeks. The aged cheese has a fuller, more complex, and long-lasting taste that is known as the "kokumi sensation," a term used by Japanese researchers to describe a rich, thick taste. Hofmann???s team determined that the kokumi sensation can be traced to six -L-glutamyl peptides?? (J. Agric. Food Chem. 2009, 57, 1440). Their findings could be used to enhance the flavor of other dairy products.
- Chemical & Engineering News
- ISSN 0009-2347
- Copyright © American Chemical Society