An objective test for measuring stretch properties of mozzarella cheese

Principal Investigators: Donald J. McMahon, Utah State University

Co-Investigators: Craig J. Oberg, Weber State University

Project Summary:

The performance of cheese on a pizza depends on how readily the cheese melts and how well it can be stretched. Suppliers of cheese to the pizza industry, subjectively measure this performance using a fork test. A test has been developed at Utah State University that can be used to objectively measure cheese performance when heated. To determine if the “Stretch” test was a suitable replacement for the fork test, a comparison between the two tests was performed. The cheeses was tested in the range of 65°C to 85°C using the USU Stretch Test and then compared to evaluations of the same cheese by an industrial partner using the fork test. The USU stretch test provides a better characterization of a pizza cheese than can the pizza fork test. Where the pizza fork test is only able to record the distance that the cheese can stretch, the USU stretch test is capable of measuring a variety of parameters, which provides not only an indication of how far the cheese will stretch, but other important functional properties related to the cheese, such as elasticity, and the amount of cheese pulled into a strand as the cheese is being stretched.



Moyes, B. L., 2003 Correlation between the USU stretch test and the pizza fork test, M.S.

Published Abstract:

Moyes, B. L., D. J. McMahon and C. J. Oberg. 2003. Correlation between the USU stretch test and the pizza fork test. American Dairy Science Association Meeting, J. Dairy Sci. 86(Supp. 1):364.