Yes, it's Cheese. And Vegan
We are probably going to debate what is cheese till the end of time; however there are more pressing issues to deal with and I don't care for arguing when history from all cultures shows milk is more than what comes out of an animal.
What is produced at Food by Sumear is considered cheese as it takes everything we have learnt about dairy and fermentation and uses it with plants. Whichever way you look at it, dairy-cheese is a fermented product as we use a colony of bacteria to acidify and sour a base. This in terms, preserves the base for a longer shelf-life and allow us to access to nutrients in another form.
Dairy-cheese has come a long way since then of just needing to for nutrients. Cheese is not considered a health food and is mostly enjoyed as an indulgent.
The Food by Sumear Cheeses
Like dairy cheese, the processes of the Food by Sumear vegan-cheese uses the same principles of dairy cheesemaking science; to use microbes to change the properties of the base ingredients and then use a numbering of techniques to produce a wide array of flavours and textures.
To me, Sumear, cheese is about those key profiles such as sharp, nutty, fatty, salty, floral, fruity, goaty, and more, paired with a wide array of aromas and textures that have a pleasant mouthfeel.
When you take plant-matter and process it in the same way as dairy-cheese, you can achieve the same flavour profiles as the most significant contributor are those processes working with the microbes that are added, from the ingredients and the environment.
Though the base ingredients play a role in the over-arching flavour and texture, the underlying notion of cheese is still there that can fool anyone.
In a roundabout way to tell this story, the point is using the microbes in all stages of cheesemaking to achieve those dairy-cheese tones. There are no spices, no artificial flavours. No added flavours full stop.
Texture is Key
However, given the nature of dairy, which has a specific set of proteins, the texture is the hardest to emulate. Given that there are 1000s of different dairy-cheeses with different textures, another category of cheese with its own composition is not as farfetched as it seems.
No Room for Imitations
This brings us to the point of imitation - Food by Sumear cheeses is not about imitating exact dairy-cheeses. In the current state of affairs, it is impossible to replicate Cheddar, Camemberts, Stilton, and so on. Any attempt will be a poor excuse of cheese as it will fall short and ruins the heritage of those cheeses.
By following the science & art of cheesemaking with plants, a range of vegan cheeses with their own unique flavours and textures can be achieved that works for them, and can be considered as cheese.
Cheese is not the ingredients. Cheese is about the microbes and science used by the maker.