The cheese originally comes from the Emme valley in the canton of Bern. Unlike some other cheese varieties, the denomination "Emmental" was not protected ("Emmentaler Switzerland" is, though). Hence, Emmental of other origin, especially from France and Bavaria, is widely available. Even Finland is an exporter of Emmental cheese.
Emmental is a yellow, medium-hard cheese, with characteristic large holes. It has a piquant, but not really sharp taste. Three types of bacteria are used in the production of Emmental: Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactobacillus, and Propionibacter shermani. In the late stage of cheese production, P. shermani consumes the lactic acid excreted by the other bacteria, and releases carbon dioxide gas, which slowly forms the bubbles that make holes.
It is noteworthy that "Swiss Cheese" not made in Switzerland typically tastes considerably different, primarily because the raw milk to make the cheese should not be transported over long distances, as the vibrations homogenize the milk, and thereby changes the outcome.
In cooking, it is often put on top of gratins, dishes which are then put in the oven to let the cheese melt and become golden-brown and crusty. It is also used for fondue in which case it is blended with Gruyere cheese.
Streptococcus thermophilus 580 produces a bacteriocin potentially suitable for inhibition of Clostridium tyrobutyricum in hard cheese
Oct 01, 2003; ABSTRACT A strain of Streptococcus thermophilus that inhibits Clostridium tyrobutyricum has been isolated from raw milk. The...
Patent No. 7,579,033 Issued on Aug. 25, Assigned to Leprino Foods for Semi-Hard Cheese Preparation Method (Colorado Inventors)
Sep 01, 2009; ALEXANDRIA, Va., Sept. 1 -- Richard K. Merrill of Highlands Ranch, Colo., and Mayank Singh of Aurora, Colo., have developed a...