"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > Recipes & Ingredients > Eggs, Cheese & Dairy
Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 05-22-2006, 08:57 AM   #1
Executive Chef
 
bethzaring's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Northern New Mexico
Posts: 4,597
Velveeta

Well folks, lets just duke it out right now

I have not thought of Velvetta in decades, since my childhood. I love cheese and spend time loitering around cheese counters when I visit stores that have them. I do not find Velvetta cheese in the refrigerated cheese counters I visit, thus it has not been on my mind. BUT this past week, when I went to the market for some onions I cruised past the cheese counter to see the offerings, nothing there that caught my interest . But just past the cheese counter, on a regular shelf, was VELVETTA, in boxes, not refrigerated. How can grocery stores do that? Also on the Velvetta shelf were those green canisters of parmesan cheese. Again, how can parmesan cheese not be refrigerated? My guess is that it is not real food.

I chuckled when mylegsbig recently said he wanted to use the best ingredients in a home made version of hamburger helper and was intending to use Velvetta, I was thinking, I don't think so. If you really want to use the best ingredients, please get rid of the Velvetta. I also want to use the best ingredients in the foods I prepare and Velvetta does not make the cut, plastic tasting water added to some processed cheese food. And I now realize it is not even refrigerated in the grocery stores, that is a big red flag for me. Real food is perishable. If Velvetta is not refrigerated, then it can not be real food.

The intent of this post is to get folks to think about the ingredients they buy and use. Of course I fully realize that we consumers vote with our dollars. If people stop buying velvetta, it will stop being offered. But by the amount of dry shelf space that was devoted to velvetta, that ain't gonna happen soon.

__________________

__________________
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. Margaret Mead
bethzaring is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 09:09 AM   #2
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: SE Pennsylvania
Posts: 4,655
Velveta is a stabilized processed American cheese spread...so for folks who simply want to melt up some cheese without making a bechamel sauce, it's going to work...it is real food, and contains real American cheese and milk etc. Pure cheeses will break down into their fat and milk solids when heated. The acids which are responsible for the sharpness in flavor may also change. Velveta is shelf stable until opened. THe parmesan and romano cheeses in grated canned form also have stabilizers and preservatives added. But they are real cheese in most cases. Some lesser brands may be flavored saw dust, but KRAFT does make cheese. I just prefer to buy the block or wedge of better quality.
__________________

__________________
Robo410 is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 09:44 AM   #3
Assistant Cook
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,694
You will notice on the ethnic aisle that there are bottled Italian parm cheeses that don't require refrigeration--until opening. There are many industrial processes that allow this.
Velveeta has never required refrigeration--until opened. It has a purpose. I don't use it much any more because there are better alternatives.
__________________
Gretchen is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 10:18 AM   #4
Certified Pretend Chef
 
Andy M.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 41,351
Quote:
Originally Posted by bethzaring
...Real food is perishable. If Velvetta is not refrigerated, then it can not be real food...
I don't use Velveeta myself. However, I will take exception to your blanket trashing of processed foods (or at least, processed cheeses). I started shying away from absolute statements some time ago. They are seldom accurate. As Robo explained, it's real food that's been modified from its original form to make it more convenient. Convenience is not a curse.

Keep in mind that real wheels of Parmesan cheese and real whole prosciutto hams are stored in unrefrigerated buildings for months before being sold.

That being said, on the rare occasions when I've made mac and cheese, I've use unprocessed cheeses, whole milk and butter in the recipe. I did, however, buy factory made elbow macaroni that I don't store in the fridge.
__________________
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
Andy M. is online now  
Old 05-22-2006, 10:48 AM   #5
Head Chef
 
JMediger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 1,178
Beth, by your definition, most food in the grocery store isn't "real food" ... do you make your own ketchup, mayo, salad dressing or mustard? Do you make all your soups from scratch, including your stock? As already stated, there are foods that are processed to keep until opened - like Velveeta, ketchup, mustard, etc... This includes alot of dairy that you can find ... "real" eggs don't need to be refridgerated and "real" cheese that is wax covered doesn't either.

You also make the point that people vote with their dollars ... like many people, when I was first out of college, those dollars were not plentiful and I bought what I could. Let's see ... $4.99 for a 3 lb block of Velveeta or $4.99 for a 1/2 lb block of "real" cheddar. Hmmmmmm ... Is there a difference? Of course but let's get real (and off our high horses) - for some people, it's not about taste but being able to make a meal for their family that they can say is homemade and a little healthier than what might be in a box. It's also convience ... so because I buy the cheese singles to make our lunches with, does that mean I'm not being true to my Wisconsin roots by not using "real" cheese?

I would surely hope that if any of us were to criticize what others were cooking with, that our pantries and refridgerators would be clear of all those offending products. Those who live in glass houses should not have food fights.
__________________
JMediger is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 10:53 AM   #6
Master Chef
 
Constance's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Illiniois
Posts: 8,175
Quote:
Originally Posted by bethzaring
Well folks, lets just duke it out right now
Real food is perishable. If Velvetta is not refrigerated, then it can not be real food.
Beth, there are no hard cheeses that have to be refrigerated. The reason cheese was made in the first place was to preserve milk for later use. Refrigerators have only become commonplace in the last 70 years...cheese has been made for hundreds of years.
We only refrigerate it now because it increases the shelf life.

Velveeta melts beautifully, thus making it great for casseroles and grilled sandwiches. I raised my kids on it, because I couldn't afford fancier cheeses. Now that I can afford them, I still keep a box of Velveeta on hand because...
I LIKE IT!
__________________
We get by with a little help from our friends
Constance is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 11:12 AM   #7
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Scotland
Posts: 2,977
We don't have Velveeta in the UK (or not in my neck of the woods), consequently I'm unable to comment on the product.

BUT, I do eat as organically as possible - but this seems to be easier over here than in certain areas of the States. Doesn't mean I have to force others to believe that my way is the way THEY should eat! Goodness, I don't eat veal, (or foie gras) on ethical grounds.... doesn't mean I'm going to stop people cooking wonderful dishes with veal, I just can't bring MYSELF to eat it... and for some classic veal dishes, I just substitute thin cut pork escallopes for the veal. Most people can't tell the difference!

I think live and let live must be the motto that we all cook by
__________________
Ishbel is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 11:17 AM   #8
Master Chef
 
Constance's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Illiniois
Posts: 8,175
I agree, Ishbel...
__________________
We get by with a little help from our friends
Constance is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 12:09 PM   #9
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,357
Quote:
Originally Posted by bethzaring
If you really want to use the best ingredients, please get rid of the Velvetta. I also want to use the best ingredients in the foods I prepare and Velvetta does not make the cut, plastic tasting water added to some processed cheese food.

If people stop buying velvetta, it will stop being offered. But by the amount of dry shelf space that was devoted to velvetta, that ain't gonna happen soon.
Don't care for it. Never have. I buy fresh cheese at the deli counter, even if it is $8.00 a pound to make sandwiches. Velveeta will probably hang around for a long time. Some people like it and buy it. The green stuff in a can -- sawdust, IMO.

Part of a large chunk of my grocery bill goes toward cheese (and fresh deli)... cause I love cheese.

BTW, you forgot to mention that stuff in a can, and the individually sliced, plastic cheese food products, wrapped in plastic.
__________________
mish is offline  
Old 05-22-2006, 01:57 PM   #10
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Scotland
Posts: 2,977
Mish
We've GOT that Kraft individually wrapped stuff in some of our supermarkets. Not that I've ever tasted it, but we've got it!

Like you, I pay more to get what I want. I've been buying organic foods for over 10 years - and yes, in comparison to some of my friends and relatives, my shopping bill is HUGE... but that's my choice - just as it's their's to buy processed meats etc!
__________________

__________________
Ishbel is offline  
Closed Thread

Tags
None

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Discuss Cooking on Facebook

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:51 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.