String cheese as it is known to most of us, is a fairly new revelation to me.
Most Australians my age (cough) are unfamilar with the commercial string cheese we see in supermarkets now. When I was a kid, we did have Kraft cheese sticks, which were a different texture entirely. They were processed cheddar cheese, extruded into plastic and sealed with tiny metal rings. In hindsight, those metal rings were a choking hazard. Speaking of hazard, after four hours in the lunch box, these sticks had also turned nuclear, or mushy.
Moving to the Middle East I discovered the commercial American string cheese, as well as the local variety which is known generally as Shelal Cheese which hails from the Levant.
Marinated in olive oil, garlic and herbs, the cheese is made from part-skim milk. It’s mild and with a firm but chewy texture and has just enough zing to elevate it above the usual “string cheese”. Perfect for an afternoon snack.
A long way from the cheese sticks that blighted my childhood. For a look back, I found a photo. Nostalgic? Traumatic? You have been warned.