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Udderly complex
March 9, 2014 3:46 PM   Subscribe

Milk products and production relationships. An elaborate, color-coded Wikipedia diagram showing both common pathways such as raw milk to cream to butter, and more esoteric pathways to products such as quark, pasta filata, and schmand.
posted by grouse (32 comments total) 27 users marked this as a favorite

 
I find that chart strangely interesting. I want to blow it up and put it on a wall as art.
posted by efalk at 4:14 PM on March 9


Cool chart. But it doesn't say what dairy milk producers do with all the male calves they kill in the process. That's an inevitable part of the production process that shouldn't be overlooked.

Also, no love for rice milk, soy milk, almond milk, oat milk, coconut milk, etc.?
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 4:20 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Sorry. Did someone say my name?
posted by schmod at 4:32 PM on March 9 [4 favorites]



I'd guess all those male calves become veal.
posted by The otter lady at 4:33 PM on March 9 [3 favorites]


I just bought a similar chart for coffee. I could find room for a milk one in my kitchen somewhere.
posted by Fig at 4:54 PM on March 9 [3 favorites]


Awesome chart!

I want to help edit it, too! There's room for more products that come out of yoghurt (the Turkish drink ayran and the Indian paneer come to mind)

Also, no love for rice milk, soy milk, almond milk, oat milk, coconut milk, etc.?

These aren't related to cow's milk at all.
posted by kanewai at 5:04 PM on March 9 [9 favorites]


Yeah, I know that.

The chart should be titled "cow's milk" or "dairy milk".
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 5:11 PM on March 9


Another dairy-related flowchart: Cheese Varieties and Their Differing Methods of Manufacture from Harold McGee's On Food and Cooking.
posted by quaking fajita at 5:31 PM on March 9 [3 favorites]


paleyellowwithorange: Here's an infographic depicting the ways soy is used. It's from 1974, so the "analogs" products shown aren't as bountiful as today's market.
posted by onehalfjunco at 5:41 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


But it doesn't say what dairy milk producers do with all the male calves they kill in the process.

They get taken to the local livestock auction and sold as "day old calves." In this case, "day old" means anything up to a week or so. They get sold for somewhere between $5 and $65 depending on their quality and their chance of living through the day.

The calves are bought by someone with time, patience, or teenage children who will raise them as bottle calves until they can support themselves. When they are two or three years old, they will be butchered for hamburger. It's a labor intensive process, but by the end of it you can make a few bucks for yourself.
posted by GrumpyDan at 5:47 PM on March 9 [9 favorites]


This is brilliant. Also, I now know why my rakott krumpli wasn't working. Smetana isn't sour cream, and I suspect tejföl isn't either.
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:22 PM on March 9


I'm not sure what it says about my life that I've always wondered about this very thing. So thanks! (And how cheeses relate to one another too, so thanks for that, quaking fajita.)
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 6:53 PM on March 9


Can't find milk chocolate.
posted by miyabo at 7:34 PM on March 9 [2 favorites]


The calves are bought by someone with time, patience, or teenage children who will raise them as bottle calves until they can support themselves.

All of them? Huh.
posted by the young rope-rider at 8:20 PM on March 9


My parents used to talk about butter made from sour cream and how they used to be able to buy it in any grocery store and how much better it tasted than the simple sweet cream butter you get nowadays. I always longed to taste sour cream butter, but could never find it. Now I see that it is called "cultured butter", and it appears it is only somewhat exotic but available. What's more, it appears to be not all that hard to make. Because of your post, I may fulfill a long-held desire. Thanks.
posted by gregor-e at 8:26 PM on March 9 [8 favorites]


So that's what cultured butter is! I thought it was a marketing ploy, not an entirely different product... it's always twice the price of regular butter so my eyes just slid over the package. Huh.
posted by variella at 9:16 PM on March 9


I've made sour-cream butter and it's quite good, as long as your cream isn't too sour. Make it on a cold day, wash the butter (and your hands!) well and don't forget the salt. If you're used to margarine, as I am, it might actually be too buttery for you.
posted by Joe in Australia at 9:46 PM on March 9


Indian paneer

Paneer isn't made from yogurt. It's a type of cheese. At the end of the day it's basically pressed quark, though I think that in practice the two cheeses have slightly different recipes.

Also, I'm pretty sure ayran is just liquidy drinkable yogurt, no? I don't think it's fundamentally any different from just yogurt.

Huh. TIL that McDonalds in Turkey carries ayran as a beverage option.
posted by Sara C. at 11:58 PM on March 9


The other pretty cool revelation on that chart is that buttermilk isn't, as I was led to believe as a child, the liquid left over after making butter.
posted by Sara C. at 11:59 PM on March 9


No, it is actually the liquid left over from making butter. See the two lines that run to it?

In the old days you saved up your cream to make butter, so it was partially soured. Nowadays they produce butter on a commercial scale so they don't need to wait for the cream to accumulate; and they extract the butterfat more efficiently, so the remaining liquid isn't as nice to drink. This means that they can't produce real buttermilk except by cutting into the butter production, so they sell you a sort of simulated version made with cultured milk.
posted by Joe in Australia at 12:52 AM on March 10 [1 favorite]


Paneer isn't made from yogurt. It's a type of cheese

My mistake. I confused it with labneh, the Middle Eastern "cheese" made from straining the liquid out of yogurt.
posted by kanewai at 2:47 AM on March 10


The chart should be titled "cow's milk" or "dairy milk".

Just because it's a white liquid, doesn't mean it's "milk". Unless you milked that stuff from an almond's tiny udders, that is "almond juice", not "almond milk".
posted by EndsOfInvention at 3:12 AM on March 10 [7 favorites]


Labneh is just yogurt, are you thinking about kashk maybe?
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 5:44 AM on March 10


Nobody, not even the wind, has such tiny udders!
posted by Omnomnom at 5:47 AM on March 10 [2 favorites]


The chart is confusing when it comes to normal milk you buy in the grocery store. Homogenized, pasteurized milk of the varieties whole, skim, and lowfat.

I can find whole, skim, and lowfat, but they don't seem to route through "pasteurized milk" at all. Furthermore, "pasteurized milk" is there (as a sibling of skim/lowfat, actually) but doesn't seem to lead into any actual types of milk. And I don't see "homogenized milk" anywhere.

Am I reading the chart all wrong, or is it just not very focused on grocery milk?
posted by brenton at 10:40 AM on March 10 [1 favorite]


See the two lines that run to it?

I took that to mean that the leftover liquid from buttermaking is used to culture buttermilk (something that makes a lot more sense to me, as someone who's made yogurt, cheese, and the like on many occasions), not that it is buttermilk.

FWIW I've made butter at home many times, and the resulting liquid bears pretty much no resemblance to buttermilk. Industrial vs. not-industrial manufacture has nothing to do with it.

I'm curious about whether the liquid left over from cultured butter bears a stronger resemblance to buttermilk?
posted by Sara C. at 10:51 AM on March 10


Labneh is just yogurt, are you thinking about kashk maybe?

OK, the internet is saying labneh and Greek yogurt are the same thing, but the labneh I had was much more solid than any yogurt I had, though not as solid as kashk. More like the consistency of cream cheese. I'd say it would be about half way on the continuum yogurt > labneh > kashk.

But sometimes there are so many regional differences in the naming of things, especially in more remote and rural areas
posted by kanewai at 1:14 PM on March 10


Cool chart. But it doesn't say what dairy milk producers do with all the male calves they kill in the process. That's an inevitable part of the production process that shouldn't be overlooked.

Also, no love for rice milk, soy milk, almond milk, oat milk, coconut milk, etc.?


Tell me, where on a dairy milk processing flow-chart would you put that information?
posted by atrazine at 1:31 PM on March 10 [2 favorites]


You're right; discussion of (a) the non-milk part of the dairy process, and (b) non-dairy milk alternatives was a derail. I'm genuinely sorry about that. I wasn't trying to derail the conversation - it's just that those issues are the first things that come to my mind when I think of dairy farming. But there's a time and a place, and in retrospect this was neither. I was too quick to react.
posted by paleyellowwithorange at 1:57 PM on March 10 [1 favorite]


Sara C., the "buttermilk" sold in the USA is only a USA thing, as far as I know. The Oxford dictionary even defines buttermilk as "acidulous milk which remains after the butter has been churned out" and its first quotation is
1528 Paynell Salerne's Regim. G b, Butter mylke‥Nothynge nourisheth more than this mylke whan hit is newe sopped vp with newe hotte breadde.
When you say the liquid you had left over from butter making wasn't like buttermilk, it's like saying that a frozen sweet custard isn't "like" the ice cream you can get from McDonalds.
posted by Joe in Australia at 2:28 PM on March 10


Nice chart, but also missing the Icelandic Skyr which seems to catching on in the rest of Scandinavia. Try it, it’s good.
posted by bouvin at 3:17 PM on March 10


Inside the Milk Machine: How Modern Dairy Works
posted by homunculus at 2:23 PM on March 18 [1 favorite]


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