Tuesday, January 31, 2012

When Cheese Isn't Cheese

 My wife's doctor told her to cut back on dairy products a couple of years ago.  It seemed like the end of the world.  After all, dairy is a part of a lot of the foods we eat every day.

In the end, it hasn't been that challenging and has even been rewarding discovery of new flavor and healthier options.

One of the things we replaced was traditional cheese in our house.  We did this with help from Galaxy Foods that prepare cheese-like products.

We replaced slices of cheddar block cheese with "Veggie Slices" cheddar flavor slices.  The other flavors include pepper-jack, American, Swiss, mozzarella, smoked provolone, and cheddar with jalapenos.

In every taste-test (grilled cheese or sandwich), nobody could tell the difference.  Our family and friends have had it on their sandwiches without notice.  The flavor and texture is great and it melts easily.

The base for this product is soy flour rather than milk.  It maintains a 3 grams of protein but without any cholesterol.

I recently purchased their "Vegan" version as it was on sale.  The protein is derived from peas rather than casein (a milk derived product) giving it a firmer texture and slight green color.  The first thing I noticed between the Veggie and Vegan options was the color and how much firmer the Vegan cheese slice was.

The Vegan cheese slice melts okay and the taste is similar, but using it cold will be a definite giveaway as it is not that flexible and has a different mouth texture.

If you are a first-time purchaser and can choose between the two options, try Veggie first.  I would recommend this product to anyone wanting to reduce their cholesterol intake or who is looking for a healthier option for cheese slices.

At health food stores, you can buy a package of veggie slices for $3.99, but our regular grocery store also carries them (by the bagged lettuce) for $2.99.  There 12 slices in a package for the Veggie slices and 10 for the Vegan version.

I have not tried Galaxy Foods other cheese-like products, but there are many.  Based on my experience,  I would think they would be really good.  The company also the Carbon Fund for carbon free shipping of their products.

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