The ingredients firm launched MaxiCurd in September 2008 initially for pasta filata cheeses like mozzarella, but continued testing with other cheese forms.
It has now confirmed its use in cottage cheese to increase yield and strengthen the curd, as well as allowing for skimmed milk powder to be used in place of fresh milk – a finding that can result in cost savings.
“Cottage cheese manufacturers are generally restricted to skimmed milk powder produced under low pasteurisation conditions, and this can only be used at a limited ratio if the quality of the cottage cheese is to be maintained,” said Rutger van Rooijne, new business development manager at DSM Food Specialities.
However use of MaxiCurd is said to restore the renneting properties of skimmed milk powder – which is not subject to quite the same wild fluctuations in supply and price as fresh milk. This means the skimmed milk powder can be used at a higher ratio.
According to DSM, MaxiCurd can enable yield increases of up to 4 per cent – not to be sniffed, especially in times of economic strife.
It is said to do this by allowing a higher pasteurisation temperature to be used without compromising quality, taste and texture of the cheese. High temperatures are one way of boosting yield, but this practice tends to make the curds weak, leading to losses during handling and a soft texture.
With MaxiCurd, however, peptides stabilise the physical bonds between whey proteins during renneting, strengthening the structural network of the curd.
Before use the ingredient needs to be dissolved in water at 40ºC in 10 per cent solution. It is then added directly to the pasturised cheese milk, just like rennet.
A company spokesperson said that more applications for the ingredient are expected to be confirmed in the near future.