The history of cheese confirms that the accidental invention of cheese caused a revolutionary change in the life of Neolithic man because it represented a safe source of nutrients, which is why the Neolithic man went from hunter and gatherer to shepherd and farmer.
This was the moment when ancient man started to eat cheese, to obtain healthy nutrition and grow his brain very fast, and therefore to progress very fast.
Many of us are cheese lovers, and it is not a wonder, since eating cheese, is proven that makes us feel great.
Also, and this is so important to mention, the fact that there are over 1400 types of cheese in the world.
How many of them you have tried?
Do not let this information discourages you, but try to try as many kinds of cheese with different tastes and smells as possible.
You will most certainly enjoy it…
Now, here we will speak more about Mozzarella cheese – one of the most favorite cheeses on the market, that has extreme usage, and it has an amazing taste, that is a bit sour, and a bit sweet, it goes so well with various dishes.
This soft and incredibly tasty cheese is widely used in many dishes. Add a cube of mozzarella to various salads, and sauces, it can also be used as a garnish for vegetable dishes and even for dishes like pies.
The taste of pizza can be amazing if you put a few slices of mozzarella on top – we are most certain that you have tasted it; and that you have loved it very much.
There are a few rules when it comes to eating mozzarella.
For example, it is good to let it rest at room temperature before serving, so that the elasticity and soft taste of this cheese can be felt better.
Mozzarella is popular as an ingredient in Caprese salad (with tomatoes, basil, and olive oil), and is also a great ingredient when placed on pizza, lasagna, or bruschetta.
Now, for the people who belong to the Muslim faith, eating this cheese is supposed to be halal, or allowed, having in mind that is made almost entirely out of milk, which is one of the ingredients that is allowed for them; as it does not have anything in itself that would not permit its usage.
But, the question is – is this all there is, or is there a certain ingredient that would not allow people of the Islamic faith to eat it?
There is one thing, and ingredient that is the center of it all, and it can make an entire difference.
Is Mozzarella Cheese Halal or Haram In Islam?
Muslim faith organizes the entire lives of its believers, and it is all base on their Holy Book, the Quran, and the many meanings that are a part of it.
Islamic faith has specific regulations which must be followed to see a certain animal product allowed, or as it is called in the Islamic faith, to be halal, as this is the opposite of haram, which is forbidden.
You may wonder right now, where are the animal ingredients hidden, what is it, and why it can be problematic for people of this faith.
It is said that Mozzarella cheese is not made only out of milk and that it has its rennet, in which you buy it, as it needs to be in it, to be safe for consumption, as this is the type of a cheese which is not very long in the terms of lasting, it would become sour very fast without the rennet, and the question is – is this rennet allowed in Muslim faith?
First of all, you must know that it comes from an animal source and that it is very important how that animal was killed.
What was like that slaughtering procedure?
And precisely rennet is not one of the halal ingredients, on the contrary, it is seen as haram, and once again the problem comes from the way it killed that animal.
Now, there is a chance that that specific animal was killed in an unknown way, and therefore for Muslim believers, the halal status is not known, and maybe it is the best advice to stay away from it.
But, there is also something that is truly comforting here, and it comes from the fact that the majority of vegetarian ingredients and other, in a sense products are set to be halal.
It is because there are not any traces of killing an animal.
Now, no one can make a decision for you what to eat and what not to eat, and of course, you should always follow the general rule, and of course, read the ingredients list always, and look for the “problematic” parts.
What is rennet and why is it problematic?
This is the component that causes a potential problem, regarding this cheese, having in mind that it could make Mozzarella cheese not halal.
A product called rennet makes the problem.
It is an enzyme that is collected from the butchered animal’s insides and abdomen.
And here comes the problem, when the animal in question is not killed based on the Muslim rules, then the product that is connected to it, is not seen as halal.
It cannot be.
Most commonly, rennet is derived from the cow’s belly, but this is not always the case, as this component can be derived from a pig also (its stomach).
When this is the case; then the food item, like in this case, Mozzarella cheese cannot be seen as halal.
Also, there are 2 directions to the concept of whether Mozzarella cheese is haram or halal.
Certain Islamic teachings claim that there is nothing to worry about, since after the milk separation, there is not much rennet there, and you should not be worried about these laws.
And, also it is said that there is a verse in the Muslim Holy book that says how the prophet Muhamed requests cheese and gets it, which makes it completely halal.
Once again, and this serves as a good reminder, you must be conscious of what you are putting inside of your body, what is rennet, as many of you have not heard of it.
So, this is an enzyme that is found in the stomach of many animals, there are juices similar to rennet.
They can even coagulate milk, but these juices are not rennet and are quite different from it.
Similar juices are found in some plants, but they are not rennet either, so do not confuse them by it, they are not the same, and cannot serve the same purpose.
Hence, real and good rennet can only be obtained from the stomachs of those animals that have rennet, which is the case with ruminants.
Rennet is most often, almost exclusively, made from veal rennet, while goat and lamb rennet are less often used for this purpose because they have a particular smell, which is not desirable for cheese.
Rennet, like other yeasts, can be liquid or powdered.
This enzyme is quite necessary, and in the majority of cases, 99,9 percent, you will not make a mistake if you eat it, since it comes from allowed animals, but what can cause the problem, and you cannot find out, whether it is true, is the way that animal was eaten.
Was it slaughter by Islamic rules, or it was something that breaks the rules for such faith, and therefore it cannot be consumed?
More about Mozzarella Cheese
One of the most beloved cheeses there is – mozzarella a cheese made from buffalo milk and is originally from Campania, an area near Naples; in Italy, and even these days here is the place where the best Mozzarella is made.
History recalls how during the Second World War, the Nazis destroyed a huge part of the buffalo herd, which is the reason why cow’s milk was used to make mozzarella.
Today buffalo milk mozzarella is highly valued, and large amounts of cow milk mozzarella are actively produced only in Italy.
It can be even very pricey – and can cost a fortune.
Mozzarella has an almost white, porcelain color, and this is something that you can always recognize it.
The texture of this cheese is pearly smooth and does not have a hard rind, as other kinds of cheese have.
It is an unsalted cheese, which is why many people do not prefer mozzarella.
The original mozzarella made from buffalo milk is a quality product, with a much softer form and a more satisfying taste than the one made from cow’s milk.
It is always formed into little and oval balls, and in shops, you can find it precisely in this form.
Mozzarella production starts when it is absorbed with the last heating to 80-90 degrees with continued mixing until a flexible blend is received. Balls of porcelain white color and elastic interior are taken from it.
Mozzarella is very rich in proteins, minerals (zinc, magnesium, phosphorus), and vitamins (A, B2, B12, D, and PP).
So, when you recall our story from the beginning, then you can see why the ancient man progressed so fast after he had consumed this richness of taste, that came from cheese.
It has a very high calcium content, which plays an important role in the processes that take place in the human body, and also affects the presence of milk enzymes.
GI (glycemic index) – 78.32, which is pretty good, if you ask nutritionists.
In 100 g of mozzarella, there are 302 calories, 180 calories from fat, 20.03 g total fat, 54 mg cholesterol, 0.60 g fiber, 25.96 g protein, and 46 ml water.
We could say that when we look at things from such a perspective, then we know that there are two schools of Islamic teachings; one part claim that Mozzarella cheese cannot be halal; and the other that it is haram, all because of the rennet.
Rennet is obtained from the stomach lining of young mammals, and it is different from anything that may resemble it.
The mucous membrane of the stomach of a young mammal secretes the enzyme renin (chymosin) which aids in the digestion of the mother’s milk during the sucking phase of the young.
The young’s mucous membrane is dried and ground into powder, and to obtain rennet, the powder is dissolved in water.
As an alternative, the food industry has developed the production of synthetic rennet, but in terms of cheese quality, it is always better to use natural rennet.
Rennet is most abundant in the rennet of young animals (calves, lambs, kids), while it is very little in older animals.
Rennet is one of the juices of the stomach, which differs from other juices in that it can coagulate milk.
This juice does not work on other liquids.
If you are not sure, you should avoid eating this type of cheese, as you can never be sure, if the rennin has come from an animal that was allowed to be consumed in Islam, but not only this; you can never be certain if the animal in question was killed by Islamic rules.
But, in any other case, if for example, the Mozzarella cheese you are eating has a halal certificate, then you can be certain that all the steps in the preparation are respected and that you can safely enjoy it.