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Mozzarella best cheese for pizza, according to scientific study

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Scientists have found that mozzarella is the best cheese for pizza because of the way it browns and stretches. (iStock)

Tired of plain mozzarella on your pizza?  Thought you’d experiment with other types of cheese?

Well, don’t because science has weighed in on the issue.

According to a new study published in the August issue of the Journal of Food Science, titled “Qualification of Pizza Baking Properties of Difference Cheese and Their Correlation with Cheese Functionality,” mozzarella is the best pizza cheese because it melts, bubbles and browns better than any other cheese.

Bryony James, a professor of materials engineering at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, is one of the scientists who conducted the study.

She explains how, by using cameras and special software designed to precisely measure the amount of browning, blistering and oil content, they were able to conclude mozzarella bubbles in a certain way, making the browning processes perfect for pizza.

Since it's made by repeatedly stretching and molding fresh curds, "mozzarella has a lot of elasticity," she explains. "If you look at it under a microscope, you see it has these channels of fat surrounded by protein."

In comparison, cheddar browns nicely but doesn’t have the same elasticity as mozzarella, so it barely bubbles. Gruyere bubbles well but doesn't brown.

They conclude that there is a pizza solution for getting a sharper flavor with the nice, brown bubbles.

“Different cheeses can be employed on “gourmet” style pizzas in combination with Mozzarella,” reads the abstract.