Cheese one of the most concentrated of foods. According to the professors of dietetics, whom opinions are of no particular value or interest to anyone possessed of common sense, it is very rich in protein, and is a food far more concentrated than meat, eggs and so forth. Animals who know nothing about protein, calories, vitamins, etc., flourish, while wretched men, led by the nose by pseudo-scientists, suffer almost universally from indigestion, constipation and innumerable diseases of the alimentary tract from the mouth to the anus, from which unscientifically fed animals are free.
Food is not a problem suitable for laboratory investigation by highly trained scientists, but is a matter of common sense and of experience. Drawing upon my experience, I remember that I learned the value of cheese as a food from Swiss herdsmen who, living in isolated cottages, subsist for months on bread, cheese and milk. When tramping and climbing I often shared their food and lunched on bread, milk, and a hunk of cheese as large as my fist, weighting probably about a pound.
However, the herdsmen, who often were cheese-makers as well, were careful to explain to me that their cheese was not the celebrated Gruyere which was obtainable in the towns, that Gruyere was super-fatted cheese and it would be too rich for them, that their was meagre cheese, that Gruyere was nicer to the taste, being so rich in cream, but that is would upset them and me if taken in substantial quantities.
The civilized people in the towns, following their palate, demand rich, super-fatted cheese and their favourites are Stilton, Gruyere, Camembert, Brie, Gorgonzola etc., all of which are very super-fatted, and many of the Cheddar cheese are also difficult to digest. Hence, the judicious and those with a weak digestion either leave cheese alone or they take merely a scrap as large as a lump of sugar, or two.
Cheese is obviously a most valuable food. Dogs, bears and other animals love it, but it wants thorough mastication, thorough breaking up into very small particles. Insalivation in the mouth seems of comparatively less importance. Hence those who cannot digest cheese in the piece can usually digest it very easily, even if they take it in considerable quantities if it is finely grated.
The French and Italians serve finely grated cheese in large jars with soups, vegetable stews, etc., and in this form cheese is not only a palatable but a very digestible food. It can, of course, also be eaten on bread and butter. By pressing a piece of bread and butter on a plate thickly strewn with grated cheese, one can make an most excellent cheese sandwich, for a thick layer of cheese adheres to the butter. Invalids should never eat solid cheese, but only grated cheese, or they ought to eat cheese in the form of toasted cheese, Welsh rarebits, etc., but, in making these, condiments should be used sparingly.
All over the Continent one can obtain curds which are called abroad curd cheese, pot cheese, milk cheese. This cheese is often eaten mixed with milk and sugar, like the famous Coeur a la Creme. In England this cheese is obtainable at the numerous Sainsburys shops, where it is sold under the name of York cheese. Sainsburys also produce a similar cheese of extremely pleasant flavour, which they called Bon-don, and another cream cheese, of which I have forgotten the name.
All three are exceedingly digestible. These cheeses, like milk and cream, are apt to turn strong, but they can easily be kept for a week or so submerged in water, or in slightly salted water, even if there is no refrigerator. Then there is a very pleasant and very digestible cream cheese called St. Ivel, which exists in two forms, the plain St. Ivel and the Lactic St. Ivel. The latter is supposed to contain the Bacillus Bulgaricus of Metchnikoff, which we are told has very pleasant medicinal qualities, the bacillus purifying the bowel, combating the organisms of putrefaction. Whether it does so or not is a moot point.