The end of ignorance


I recently purchased a small wedge of Parmesan Reggiano cheese from Trader Joe’s – just enough to put a little taste onto my salads. And then eat the rest by the crumbly handfuls.

Last night, I looked at the ingredients on this particular variety of cheese, and they were quite simple: part skimmed raw milk, cheese cultures, salt, animal rennet.

Rennet? thought I. What on earth could that be?

A little internet action later, and I learned the truth:
rennet: curdled milk from the stomach of an unweaned calf

I… I’m sorry, come again?

Yes. CURDLED MILK FROM THE STOMACH OF AN UNWEANED CALF. This is so much worse than the day that I learned that the addictive taste of Dr. Pepper came from prune juice. My world has been shattered. I have absolutely no desire to know how one would go about actually procuring, um, rennet. I am thoroughly horrified.

But sadly, not enough to stop me from consuming it like a ravenous wolverine. That loves cheese.


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  1. Ashley Parsons on August 24, 2007 at 4:02 PM

    that might be the sickest thing I’ve ever heard. I almost just threw up in my mouth. not almost.

  2. bec on August 24, 2007 at 4:15 PM

    i feel more concerned about the baby cows than the people who consume the rennet.

    …but you probably already knew that.

  3. Lyla on August 24, 2007 at 5:24 PM

    They make cheese from dead baby cows?!? *shudder*

  4. J.P. Ensor on August 24, 2007 at 9:30 PM

    That’s about as awful as I it gets. I just want to never eat cheese ever again. That is, until I forget about this tomorrow and eat a whole brick of it.

  5. Sarah on August 25, 2007 at 2:14 PM

    I’m with Becca on this one – poor beebs.

  6. Anonymous on August 26, 2007 at 7:24 PM

    Hey Annie,

    Love your blog, thought you might like to know that Dr Pepper doesn’t have prunes in it. It’s an urban legend. See the following link…

  7. My name is Annie. on August 26, 2007 at 9:46 PM

    Hi Anonymous.
    WHO KNEW????? You did. Now I do. And I’m so glad! Thanks for reading – I wish you had a blog so I could snoop, too. :)

  8. Greg on August 27, 2007 at 11:10 AM

    woops, sorry, I thought I was logged in, I didn’t mean to be anonymous! =)
    I’ve been thinking about doing a blog at some point, I don’t always feel very wordy. =)

  9. Spencer (the fencer) on August 28, 2007 at 2:33 AM

    Cheese is what makes my world go around. well, it’s a good source of protein on the road. I used to think it was a decent replacement for untrusting fast food burgers. how bout not. Needless to say, i shall stay faithfull to my food love: cheese.

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