- noun an extract from the stomach of a calf; it contains the enzyme rennin, which clots milk. It is used in the production of certain milk products such as cheese.
- A mixture of enzymes extracted from the stomachs of suckling animals such as calves, kids and lambs, but usually from the fourth stomach of the unweaned calf. Is is used to curdle milk as the first stage in cheese making. vegetarian rennets are now made using microorganisms. Some extracts of plants, especially cardoon, are used for the same purpose.
- noun a substance made from the lining of calves’s stomachs that is used in cheese making
Origin & History of “rennet”
Rennet probably goes back to an unrecorded Old English *rynet. this appears to have been derived from the verb run, which was used dialectally into the 20th century for ‘curdle’. The underlying notion is of the solid parts of milk ‘running’ together and coagulating.