Suitability of selected autochthonous lactic acid bacteria cultures for Pecorino Sardo Dolce cheese manufacturing: influence on microbial composition, nutritional value and sensory attributes


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The use of an autochthonous starter culture made up by Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis, Lactobacillus plantarum and Lactobacillus casei in the production of experimental Pecorino Sardo Dolce PDO resulted in a high presence of presumptive mesophilic lactococci and lactobacilli, ~10 log colony-forming units (cfu), and in significantly higher amount of total free amino acids and free fatty acids, 195.1 vs 178.9 and 328.6 vs 191.8 mg/100 g of experimental vs control cheese (made using a commercial starter) respectively. The experimental cheese also displayed better sensory properties such as taste and aftertaste.