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Inorganic constituents of cheese: analysis of juice from a one-month-old Cheddar cheese and the use of light and electron microscopy to characterize the crystalline phases

  • Howard A. Morris (a1), Carl Holt (a1), Brian E. Brooker (a2), Jean M. Banks (a1) and William Manson (a1)...

Summary

A method of extracting cheese juice is described. Juice from a single one-month-old Cheddar cheese was used to investigate the relationship between the composition of the cheese juice and the occurrence of crystalline aggregates in the cheese. Two classes of crystalline aggregates were identified by light microscopy and also by electron microscopy in combination with X-ray microanalysis: the larger class contained both Ca and P whereas the smaller class contained Ca but not P. Concentrations of ions in the cheese and cheese juice were determined and corrected for the excluded volume of co-solutes and other phases present. When this was done, comparison of the concentrations of Na, K, Cl and lactate in the cheese and the cheese juice indicated that they were virtually entirely in solution, whereas appreciable amounts of the total Ca, P and P1 in the cheese were not extracted in the cheese juice. The amounts of the non-extractable salts were consistent with the volume fractions of the crystalline aggregates found by microscopy; calculations of the ion equilibria in the cheese juice showed that it was supersaturated with respect to various Ca phosphate salts and to tricalcium citrate. It is concluded that the physicochemical origin of the crystalline aggregates was the nucleation and growth of crystals from a supersaturated solution, though the sites of nucleation may have been formed by the microbial activity in the cheese. Of the free amino acids found in the juice, none was at a sufficiently high concentration to form a saturated solution, indicating that in this relatively young cheese the crystalline aggregates were not formed from amino acids.

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Inorganic constituents of cheese: analysis of juice from a one-month-old Cheddar cheese and the use of light and electron microscopy to characterize the crystalline phases

  • Howard A. Morris (a1), Carl Holt (a1), Brian E. Brooker (a2), Jean M. Banks (a1) and William Manson (a1)...

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