A Short Introduction - Milk or Dudh is a fluid obtained from the mammary glands of mammals which contains almost all types of proteins and lactose. Human infants are fed with milk before it starts to digest any food item. Milk increases the immunity of the body, and it is also a good source of energy. Milk contains good fats and all other essential nutrients like vitamins and minerals.
Milk is obtained from many animals like goat, sheep, cow, buffalo, camel, donkey, reindeer, and giraffe. India is the world's largest milk producing country; also top-ranked in exporting skimmed milk powder.
Types Of Milk
Cow Milk: Cow milk is produced from cow’s varieties like Jersey, Zebu, Brown Swiss, and Holstein-Friesian. Cow milk is very healthy and also low in fats so easy to digest by infants and grownups too. Cow milk has many health benefits without a gain in body weight.
Buffalo Milk: Buffalo milk contains more fats than that of cow milk. The fat content in buffalo milk is two times more than fats content in cow milk. Buffalo milk not digestible by human infants because of its high-fat content.
Goat Milk: Goat milk contains more gentle proteins than cow milk also include more proportion o cobalt salts which is a component of vitamin B, vitamin A, and vitamin D. Goat milk is used to prevent obesity, atherosclerosis, allergy, and cancer. Goat milk is used to improve immunity as it contains Linoleic acid.
Sheep Milk: Sheep milk is more abundant in proteins than of cow milk; it is said that it contains as much as 1 and half times more protein than cow milk. Sheep milk contains more vitamin A, vitamin B1, and vitamin B12. Most of the European countries use sheep milk products like yogurt, kefir, butter, and cheese.
Camel Milk: Camel milk is salty as it contains more minerals like calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, and sulfur. Camel milk has a thick texture than that of cow milk. Studies have revealed that camel milk is useful against allergic diseases. People living in deserts depend on camel milk for drinking and making other products like ‘Chal.'
Reindeer Milk: Reindeer milk contains more protein as well as fats, so it is difficult for the man to digest in its natural form. Reindeer milk is thicker in texture than that of cow milk so it should be diluted with water before consuming by the human.
Yak Milk: Yak milk contains two times more fats than that of cow milk. Yak milk is used to make yak butter which has a texture the same as cheese. Yak milk is consumed in Himalayan countries like India, China, Nepal, Mongolia, and Tibet.
Giraffe Milk: Giraffe milk is sweet and contains vitamin A and vitamin B12.
Mare Milk: Mare milk is an excellent source of milk for nomadic people who keep on roaming. Mare milk is white with a bluish shade; it contains the same amount of fats as that of human milk. Mare milk contains six times more vitamin C than cow milk. Mare milk is very energetic; it is said that the ability of nomadic people to climb and long runs is only because of consuming more milk.
Taste & Texture Of Milk
Milk is slightly sweet and creamy in flavor because of its fats content. Milk does not have any strong aroma. Milk taste depends on the type of animal from which the milk is yielded. Milk is white and sometimes gives a slightly yellowish shade due to high-fat contents.
Most Worldwide Popular Culinary Uses Of Milk
Fruit Milk Shake: Fruit milkshake is a very refreshing and energetic beverage made using strawberry, pineapple, custard apple, apple, or mango blended with milk, sugar, ice-cubes, cardamom, and nutmeg. Fruit milkshake can be consumed as breakfast or to fill tummy on a hot summer noon.
Milk Rabdi: Milk Rabdi is made by heating milk until the texture of milk becomes creamy thick. Crushed dry fruits, sugar, cardamom and nutmeg powder is added to the thickened milk. Milk Rabdi served hot or chilled with some pistachios for garnishing.
Milk Kheer: Kheer is an Indian sub-continent dessert served on festive seasons and celebrations, also offered to devotees during worship. Milk Kheer is made by boiling rice, vermicelli, and semolina in milk. When the added ingredients get cooked nicely; sugar, dry fruits, and cardamom powder is added to milk and mixed. Tasty, delicious, creamy Milk Kheer is ready to serve.
Milk Pedha: Pedha is a sweet patty made in the Indian sub-continent distributed when any good thing occurred before or during worship. Milk Pedha is made using ‘Khowa’; which is a product of milk. Khoya is made by heating milk on low flame till the milk fluids vaporized and only milk fats remain. Sugar, cardamom powder, and saffron are added to the Khoya, and small patty or spheres are made out of dough known as Pedha.
Kalakand: Kalakand is another dessert made from milk also known as milk-cake; made by curdling milk. Milk is curdled, and solids of milk are separated from the whey. Milk solids are added with sugar and required essence; to make Kalakand. Kalakand is garnished with silver foils and pistachios.
Rashogulla: Rashogulla is a sweet originated in the Bengal state of India. Rashogulla is invented accidentally while making another dish for the British people at the time when they ruled. Rashogulla is made using milk solids obtained by curdling; the milk solids are turned into small balls and boiled in the sugar syrup flavored with cardamom powder.
Rasmalai: Rasmalai is a sweet dish served on wedding meals, festive occasions and celebrations. Rasmalai is a dish made with curdled milk solids flattened cakes dipped in the milk Rabdi flavored with vanilla essence or saffron.
Halwa: Halwa is a sweet dish made with semolina, sugar, clarified butter, cardamom powder, and milk. Semolina is roasted in some butter, and hot milk is added to it to cook the semolina. Once semolina gets cooked nicely; sugar and cardamom powder are added to it and mixed thoroughly to dissolve in semolina.
Milk Payasam: Payasam is a south Indian sweet dish made with ripe jackfruit puree, sugar, cardamom powder, and nutmeg.
India Curry: Some of the Indian curries are creamy and heavy in texture. Milk or milk cream is added to curries at the end of cooking when the curry gets cooked nicely to bring a creamy, smooth texture. Milk cream or milk when added also brings a subtle sweet flavor to the curry.
Hot Beverages: Hot beverages such as milk tea, coffee are made using milk as the main ingredients. Warm milk tea on a rainy evening served with some crispy, hot Pakodas makes the day. A mug of hot brewing coffee takes away all the fatigue of a busy and hectic day.
Cold Beverages: No one can resist grabbing a mug full of cold coffee loaded with ice cubes on a hot summer day. Youngsters nowadays munch on cold coffee instead of hot tea in universities and colleges. Milk cod drink is a milk beverage made with milk served with a scoop of ice-cream on top is a favorite drink of everybody.
Nutrients In Milk
Milk fulfills almost all body nutrient requirements making it a whole meal. Milk is a rich source of various proteins, fats, and vitamins like vitamin A, B group vitamins, Choline, and vitamin D. Milk provides essential dietary minerals like calcium, potassium, magnesium, and sodium.
Health Benefits Of Milk
Good Heart Health: Calcium is useful for strong bones, but a study revealed its benefit to heart health too. Daily calcium intake is positively proportioned to the reduction in the risk of strokes. Potassium and magnesium present in milk are used to release stress over the cardiovascular system by reducing blood pressure.
Strong Bones: Calcium present in milk is the main component of bones and is a vital nutrient in the growth and repairing of bones. Daily consumption of milk by every age group helps to kip bones strong.
Healthy Teeth: Drinking milk helps to prevent any damage to teeth enamel caused by acidic food items. A habit of drinking milk in children can lessen the consumption of harmful soft drinks which damages teeth and starts it’s decaying.
Retains Water Content: Our body is 70% water; so it is very essential to keep it hydrated all day. Milk contains a significant amount of water molecules; which are necessary to consume if the child does not drink sufficient water.
Healthy Skin: Milk is beneficial for healthy and glowing skin; that's why many beauty creams contain milk as a vital component. Milk solids are useful on the skin to make it smooth and healthy. Milk is having lactic acid, which helps to remove dead skin cells from the epidermis. Milk contains vitamin A which is useful to fight against acne and dark spots on the skin.
Cures Acidity: If burned throat due to stomach acids is your daily problem then drinking heated-chilled milk is an instant and adequate remedy. Milk reduces the symptoms of acidity all over the body.
Fights Cancer: Studies have revealed that consuming dairy products daily is used to get relief from colon cancer. Milk is useful to prolong the lives of patients who have colon cancer.
History Of Milk
Humans started drinking milk from animals since the era when agriculture was developing in the Neolithic Revolution. Drinking milk from other animals began all over the world during 9000-7000 BC in Mesopotamia, 3500-3000 BC in America, 7000 BC in Britain, 4000 BC in Scandinavia, 7000-6000 BC in Africa, and 7000-5500BC in South Asia.
Human-reared first animals for lactation are cattle, goat, and sheep in southwest Asia.
Commercial Milk Production
Worldwide milk production is considered keeping four types of milk viz. cow milk, buffalo milk, goad ilk, and sheep milk. Below mentioned are the lists of countries which produce milk worldwide from these animals.
Cow Milk Producing Countries: United States, India, China, Brazil, Russia, Germany, New Zealand, France, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.
Buffalo Milk Producing Countries: India, Pakistan, China, Nepal, Egypt, Myanmar, Italy, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Iran.
Goat Milk Producing Countries: India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sudan, Mali, Spain, France, Turkey, Somalia, and Greece.
Sheep Milk Producing Countries: China, Turkey, Greece, Syria, Romania, Spain, Sudan, Somalia, Iran, and Italy.
A Detailed Information Of Other Milk Products
Curd: Curd or yogurt is a milk product made by fermenting milk with friendly bacteria. The curd is very useful for the good health of the digestive system. The curd is prepared by mixing one teaspoon of curd to the slightly warm milk and kept for fermentation for 7 to 8 hours.
Milk Cream: Milk Cream is the product of milk made by heating milk to the boiling point and cooling it at low temperatures in refrigerators. A more considerable amount of fats get separated from the milk and accumulated at the top of the milk in the form of a thick layer. Milk cream is useful to gain body weight and for the smooth and shiny skin.
Clarified Butter: Clarified butter is the product made from the separated and little-curdled cream of milk. This cream is churned to separate butter from whey. Clarified butter is beneficial to our body; though high in calories and fats, it is useful for losing weight in proper proportion.
Butter: Butter is made by adding some salt to clarified butter making it little salty. Butter is used in many dishes to make it savory and rich. Butter is healthy saturated fats useful for proper heart, eye, and bone health.
Cheese: Cheese is a creamy, rich product of milk made by curdling milk; curdled milk is separated, processed and pressed in the form of cheese cubes. Cheese contains many essential minerals and vitamins which are useful for a healthy body.
Cottage Cheese: Cottage cheese or Paneer is produced by curdling the milk with lime or vinegar. Curdled milk is pressed to drain out excess water. Cottage cheese is used to make many dishes like Indian curries, Paneer Manchuria, sandwich, and Pizzas.
Buttermilk: Buttermilk is the byproduct produced while making butter from curdled milk. Buttermilk is the low-fat product of milk very useful for, the digestive system, soothing intestines, and losing weight.