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submitted 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) by [email protected] to c/nostupidquestions

Title.

It feels like such a waste.

EDIT: This is the type of cheese I am referring to. It comes wrapped in a piece of plastic then bundled together with x more and all of them get covered in plastic

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[-] [email protected] 59 points 2 months ago

That’s how it’s made. They melt cheese with emulsifying salts, squirt it into a plastic envelope, and it cools into the shape of the wrapper.

[-] [email protected] 20 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

thanks, i'm immediately going to continue never eating the disguising "cheese" slices ever again.

[-] piecat 16 points 2 months ago

Calling it "cheese" is like saying meatloaf made from meat is "meat"

[-] Rejacked 31 points 2 months ago

I think most people would agree that meatloaf made from meat is meat.

[-] [email protected] 5 points 2 months ago

Yeah. But they wouldn't say it's made it's "meat"

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[-] I_Fart_Glitter 3 points 2 months ago

I think this idea comes from the old Kraft Singles commercials that were bragging about how KRAFT american cheese is made of MILK!! Good good good. And OTHER brands are made of OIL!!!! Bad bad bad. I don't think any brands are made with anything but cheese, divided milk and emulsifiers, but here we are.

Kraft Singles: Cheddar Cheese (Cultured Milk, Salt, Enzymes), Skim Milk, Milkfat, Milk Protein Concentrate, Whey, Calcium Phosphate, Sodium Phosphate, Contains Less than 2% of Modified Food Starch, Salt, Lactic Acid, Milk, Annatto and Paprika Extract (Color), Natamycin (a Natural Mold Inhibitor), Enzymes, Cheese Culture, Vitamin D3.

[-] ElectricTrombone 41 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

I think I can answer this. I remember when the singles came out. Used to be they had American cheese in a block. Sort of. They were sliced and stacked. This was the same American cheese/cheese product used in the singles. Exact same dimensions. The package was not re-sealable though. So I always put my block in a quart zip lock after opening. People were too fucking dumb to do this so their block of American cheese would go stale. And they complained about slices getting stuck together. Why in the world did Kraft decide to make the singles instead of changing the packaging be resealable and have wax paper like every other cheese? I have no idea.

[-] [email protected] 13 points 2 months ago

Why in the world did Kraft decide to make the singles instead of changing the packaging be resealable and have wax paper like every other cheese?

Because unfortunately, the average American is that stupid and lazy.

Source: am American and forgot how to spell camplekated words so I ju

[-] [email protected] 4 points 2 months ago

It's kind of convenient for grilling on the go. Have 4 patties, grab 4 slices and throw them in the top of the cooler, rather than the entire cheese pack, or repacking 4 slices.

[-] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

In Australia, the only cheese you could buy in the supermarket in the 1970s was Kraft in the little blue packets sold in the dry goods section.

To buy "real" cheese you had to go to a dairy, or go to the city centre and buy cheese cut off the block and wrapped in greaseproof paper from a contintental delicatessan.

Polyethylene film was not available.

So when it came out and you could buy real cheese in film from the supermarket, Kraft responded by bringing out "more convenient " Kraft Singles, which you didn't have to laboriously (?) cut from the block.

[-] roofuskit 36 points 2 months ago

That's not cheese. It's "cheese product."

[-] [email protected] 13 points 2 months ago

To my understanding, it is actually made of cheese, just cheese that has been melted, pasteurized to extend shelf life and then cooled back into solid cheese again.

[-] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago

Not quite. You're almost there. The manufacturers add emulsifying chemicals and preservatives.

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[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 months ago

It's "orange" and "oil"

[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 months ago

You're thinking of cheese wizz or spray cheese.

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[-] misophist 6 points 2 months ago

It's American cheese. The objectively superior cheese for melting on a burger.

[-] [email protected] 4 points 2 months ago

only because it's easy to melt, not because it actually taste better than other cheese options such as cheddar, swiss, or pepper jack.

[-] [email protected] 4 points 2 months ago

Kenji Lopez-Alt has a cool video where he uses American cheese as the emulsifier to make some less-melty cheeses participate in a grilled cheese. I have been using it more for its emulsifying agents than anything lately: https://youtu.be/CD8UTr5mMVk?si=n5xOumvtBqromQtB

[-] misophist 4 points 2 months ago

Oh, but it does actually taste better specifically on a burger.

[-] PeachMan 5 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

American "cheese product" can fuck right off. Gouda melts just as well and actually tastes like....you know....cheese.

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[-] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

Edit: replied to wrong comment

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[-] [email protected] 16 points 2 months ago

American cheese apparently melts so at least it makes some kind of sense.

Kraft singles in Australia are basically made from the same plastic as the packaging and are in no danger of melting or being mistaken for cheese.

[-] [email protected] 5 points 2 months ago

Do they not use milk to make Kraft singles in Australia the way they do in America? 🤔

[-] [email protected] 7 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

Food tech is kinda my area, so I went and did a little research and it turned into quite a ride. For cultural context, grilled (broiled in the US, I think) cheese and Vegemite is kind of a traditional Aussie snack. Just a slice of white bread with butter and Vegemite, slice of cheese on top, stick it under the grill.

The Kraft singles I remember from my childhood absolutely did not behave like anything resembling real cheese when you did this. It melted on the inside, sure. But the outside just dried out and turned into a kind of plasticky skin, then bubbled and burned. So you were left with this partially blackened and crunchy cling-film like skin disguising a thin layer of vaguely dairy-adjacent molten plastic goop that was guaranteed to stick to and sear the roof of your mouth. Then the skin came off in one piece and slapped you on the chin with the equally hot residue of said plastic goop. For some reason kids loved this.

I'm not sure when OP last ate them, but the Kraft singles I know got axed in like 2017 when Mondelez sold their cheese line to Bega. That makes it incredibly hard to track down the original formula to figure out what in the world they were really made of. They have, however, since been re-released and claim to be at least 45% cheese, which I suspect is a lot more than the ones I remember, probably does melt, and falls pretty squarely into the "processed cheese" definition according to FSANZ. There's no way in hell I'm buying some to try it though.

[-] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago

There is a How It's Made episode showing how Kraft singles are made somewhere. It's still cheese, but they also add more milk to make it meltier, as well as things like preservatives. It's kind of like a solidified bechamel.

Other brands of similar processed cheese slices tend to made entirely with oils with zero dairy. There is a definite difference in taste and texture comparing Kraft Singles, off-brand singles, and just plain cheddar though.

[-] BombOmOm 10 points 2 months ago

Makes them easier to separate.

If you buy cheese sliced by your grocer, they generally won't put anything between the slices, maybe just some wax paper.

[-] coffeebiscuit 10 points 2 months ago

But harder to unwrap.

Let’s be honest here, we aren’t talking about cheese. They are packed per slice because they melt easily. If they weren’t you would end up with an orange blob when it hits room temperature.

[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

They are also packed per slice because they last a lot longer. Plastic cheese or not, cheese slices have a lot of surface area and get funky relatively quickly. Also, every time you reach into a regular bag of deli sliced cheese, you introduce funk-generating organisms.

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[-] [email protected] 10 points 2 months ago

To get some free cheese with all that plastic you're buying

[-] [email protected] 7 points 2 months ago

I have never encountered this product. Can you give a brand/product name example?

[-] [email protected] 11 points 2 months ago
[-] [email protected] 4 points 2 months ago

So, what's the yellow stuff for? To keep the bags from sticking together?

[-] clif 7 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

"American cheese". I searched for an image and conveniently Wikipedia shows one with the clarification that it's an "American cheese single".

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_cheese

But, imagine ten or twenty of those individually wrapped slices wrapped together in another bit of plastic.

You can hit an image search for "American cheese singles" and find a lot more examples.

[-] [email protected] 3 points 2 months ago

Any cheese by Kraft labeled as "singles" would fit the bill. I've seen American, Swiss, and Mozzarella done this way. Italics as I cannot confirm other countries would consider it cheese.

check the labels folks, "Cheese food product" is called that because it cannot legally be called cheese.

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[-] [email protected] 5 points 2 months ago

if i buy the store brand american cheese at my supermarket, they're not individually packed and aren't really that hard to separate on their own, so lmao idk why Kraft does that.

[-] KpntAutismus 4 points 2 months ago

it is stupid and should at least not be done with plastic. there is a brand of cheese where it's entirely wrapped in compostable plastic (has the texture of baking paper) and is seperated with the same material. the best option would be to buy cheese that doesn't stick together easily (like gouda).

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this post was submitted on 05 Dec 2023
92 points (92.6% liked)

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