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Cheese (2005–2008)


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583 replies to this topic

#31 gfron1

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 07:06 AM

Both rinds were edible - the cremosina was your basic brie-like rind. The valsesia was a nice compliment to the innards of the cheese. The cheese itself was a mild, not quite nutty flavor, but with the rind, there was an illusion of pungency - the pungency wasn't there, but the aroma from the rind added layers to the taste in your mind. Both cheese were very nice - subtle and not overwhelming. The 85 guests gobbled up the 25 pounds of cheese very quickly!

#32 Dave Hatfield

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 11:40 AM

I'm amazed! How do you get these Italian cheeses in New Mexico? Even knowing that you're a pro & have your own shop I'm still flabbergasted.

I'd love a cheese forum, but got a frosty answer when I asked. I'm also a bit concerned that because I live in France much of what I can get is ungettable in the states. You give me hope.

I'm in if like minded folks want to start a very long cheese thread.

#33 Pan

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 02:52 PM

[...]I'm also a bit concerned that because I live in France much of what I can get is ungettable in the states.[...]

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My feeling would be: Don't worry about that, just post the cheeses. There are other members in Europe, and if the rest of us can't find the French cheeses in our necks of the woods, we'll just know what's waiting for us the next time we go to France!

#34 gfron1

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Posted 23 July 2006 - 08:58 PM

My feeling would be: Don't worry about that, just post the cheeses. There are other members in Europe, and if the rest of us can't find the French cheeses in our necks of the woods, we'll just know what's waiting for us the next time we go to France!

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I wholeheartedly agree! I don't want to see things I can get - how boring! I want to have something to dream about. Also, as far as me getting Italian cheeses...there's a fantastic distributor in the San Fran area called Fresca Italia that specializes in regional, artisenal cheeses from Italy. My best snag from them was 2 wheels of Castelmagno.

#35 Dave Hatfield

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 12:26 AM

Don't worry about that, just post the cheeses.



I wholeheartedly agree! I don't want to see things I can get - how boring! I want to have something to dream about.



Ok; with that encouragement I'll see what I can find. Normally I buy my cheeses on either Sunday at Linogne market or on Monday at Caussade market. Sometimes I go to Villefranche de Rouergue on Thursdays, but the best guy there is the same guy who does Caussade on Monday.

As a starter if you go here you'll find a post I did on "A tale of three cheeses".

I'd like to hear about the good artisanal cheeses that are increasingly (I think) becoming available in the states. What's good?

#36 gfron1

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 05:39 AM

I will step on a limb and suggest that the vast majority of Americans have little idea about the aging of cheese. I've served some brie that were rubbery and some that were almost completely liquid - and in both cases, people thought they were the best cheeses they've ever had. So I would love to learn from EGulleters who are coming from countries with stronger cheese traditions and histories - to learn more about cheeses in general.

Oh yeah, and don't get me going on cheese toppers - for some reason most Americans believe that if you put anything on or with your cheese, that it is no longer cheese.

#37 bleudauvergne

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 06:36 AM

Hmmm. Very nice idea, a cheese thread. Just plain cheese from all nations. I salute you. :smile: Bring on the cheese!

#38 MarketStEl

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 07:01 AM

Oh yeah, and don't get me going on cheese toppers - for some reason most Americans believe that if you put anything on or with your cheese, that it is no longer cheese.

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Huh?

I'm probably about to get myself drummed out of the cheese lovers' fellowship for confessing this, but I love sharp Cheddar spread with peanut butter.

And I've been to enough places that had chunks of Cheddar with Dijon mustard for dipping to know that some folks aren't shy about combining things with cheese.

The soft cheeses also lend themselves well to toppings and accompaniments.

So what do you top yours with (depending on the variety, of course)?
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#39 Jake

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 07:07 AM

Oh wonderful, a cheese thread! One of my very favourite things. Here in Canada we get some wonderful artisinal cheeses from Quebec that I'm very partial too. I'll be sure and photograph them next time!

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#40 Dave Hatfield

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 07:14 AM

So what do you top yours with (depending on the variety, of course)?



Very conventional, but there's nothing much better than a very young chevre topped with really good jam. Both smeared on good french bread. of course.

Or you can always dip your slightly older chevre in cumin seeds for a different taste.

I'm not sure whether Gfron1 was bragging or complaining???

#41 barritz

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 08:22 AM

I once saw an episode of Twin Peaks where one of the characters raved about a baguette with brie and butter.

#42 Dave Hatfield

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 12:39 PM

I'm excited by this thread so I went out & bought some cheeses today so I could play around. Here's the first result.

The cheese is St Nectaire. Not a rare or unusual cheese, but one that has a long history. It has certainly been made for hundreds of years and has very likely been made for over a thousand years. It is made in the uplands of the massif central not far South of Clermont-Ferrand.

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Hopefully the map above will locate the area for you.

St Nectaire is a cows milk cheese and is made with raw milk on the farms. Tradionally the milk from the salers breed of cow has been used, but new higher yielding breeds have been introduced since the war. Some of the latieres pasteurise their milk which yields an inferior cheese. You can tell which is which by the label. The Farm cheese has a green oval mark & the commercially made has a square mark. In fact the labeling system is quite detailed and with the right knowledge you can trace each cheese's origin down to the individual farm where it was made. For more information go here

Although not a dramatic looking cheese, here are a couple of St Nectaire pictures.

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St Nectaire is normally aged for 2-3 months, longer under the right conditions.

It's flavor is mild, slightly nutty with a strong after taste. The rind is edible and St Nectaire goes well with a fruity red wine.

There is lots more information available on the web and, I believe, St Nectaire can be bought in the states.

#43 Chufi

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 12:50 PM

I've read a handful of posts asking where a cheese thread is, and the answer is typically that cheese is spread throghout the other threads (Italy, etc).  Since I throw monthly cheese parties, I figured I would start a cheese thread and let it go where it goes.

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cheese parties, how wonderful.
This is going to be a great thread.

[...]I'm also a bit concerned that because I live in France much of what I can get is ungettable in the states.[...]

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My feeling would be: Don't worry about that, just post the cheeses. There are other members in Europe, and if the rest of us can't find the French cheeses in our necks of the woods, we'll just know what's waiting for us the next time we go to France!

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Indeed there are. Some members live in the Netherlands.. where you can get excellent cheese by the way :smile: :

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Friese nagelkaas, Frisian cheese with whole cloves (from the province of Friesland)

And these:
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The one on the right is 2 years old, it's made in the Dutch province Noord Holland (where Amsterdam is). The one on the left is 3 years old and made on the farm Elisabethhoeve in IJsselstein, a town to the east of Amsterdam.
You can see the crystallization in the cheeses.. both are delicious, with a salty but mellow flavor, very rich and buttery in your mouth. The 3-year old has a slightly more concentrated flavor and the texture is a bit harder and drier.

(as posted in the Dutch Cooking thread)

Edited by Chufi, 24 July 2006 - 12:51 PM.


#44 Kouign Aman

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 12:59 PM

Oh yum, Cheese!
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#45 jdtofbna

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 02:02 PM

Cheese, the staff of life. The last time I was in England, I had a cheese called Bowland. I'm pretty sure it was a Lancashire with raisins and apples, and the rind was dusted with cinnamon. oh so tasty! Of course, it's not in any of the cheese books that my local cheese merchants have, but you can bet I'll be hunting it down when I'm back over there in September. We bought it first at a deli in the Isles of Scilly, then in a little grocery in Cornwall, and then at Harrod's, so I'm hoping it will still be that easy to find.
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#46 gfron1

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 08:12 PM

Huh?

I'm probably about to get myself drummed out of the cheese lovers' fellowship for confessing this, but I love sharp Cheddar spread with peanut butter.

And I've been to enough places that had chunks of Cheddar with Dijon mustard for dipping to know that some folks aren't shy about combining things with cheese.

The soft cheeses also lend themselves well to toppings and accompaniments.

So what do you top yours with (depending on the variety, of course)?

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To answer someone else's post - I was complaining. It seems that many people think that adding things to cheese is blasphemous, and (depending on the cheese) I think toppers make a good thing great. I love traditional cheese toppers like ginger, fig spread, or balsamic. Yum!

And I'm glad the thread is being well received. I would also love to know if anyone on the list is making cheese - I'm sure we would totally dote (sp?) on them!

#47 MarketStEl

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 09:10 PM

Here's what was left of the raw milk Colby I was telling you about. I took this photo last night as I was surfing eG:

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About 25 minutes later, all traces of this cheese had disappeared.

This Colby was softer and creamier than the pasteurized milk version and had a lot more character--a slight sharpness and tang I don't associate with this cheese.

I picked it up at the seasonal farmers' market in Fitler Square one Friday when I happened past it. I'm going to have to make an effort to go there again to find out what area farm it comes from.
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#48 johnsmith45678

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 10:03 PM

I've read a handful of posts asking where a cheese thread is, and the answer is typically that cheese is spread throghout the other threads [...]

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Heh, no pun intended? ;)

#49 Dave Hatfield

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Posted 24 July 2006 - 10:56 PM

You can see the crystallization in the cheeses.. both are delicious, with a salty but mellow flavor, very rich and buttery in your mouth. The 3-year old has a slightly more concentrated flavor and the texture is a bit harder and drier.



Aged Gouda I presume. One of my favorites. We can get it here, but I'm not sure if the quality is as good as in The Nederlands.

Thinking of aged cheeses, another favorite is aged gruyer from Switzerland. Like Gouda it is transformed when aged from being a nice cheese to being a magnifigent cheese.

To answer someone else's post - I was complaining



Thought so, but didn't want to put words into your mouth. I'm with you all the way. Well almost; I baulk at velveeta with pineapple stuck on a stick.

#50 Pontormo

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Posted 25 July 2006 - 09:32 AM

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I just discovered this new thread and am in awe of the inaugural images in your post and on this first page! Thanks for starting this forum.

The husband of a couple I've known for ages adores cheese. His priorities: 1) family; 2) collecting odd things from around the world or yard sales, no difference; 3) Paris; 4) cheese, number 3 being largely determined by number 4. At a large celebration at their house in a small town in Maine, he set out a spread of somewhere between 50-75 different cheeses, all labeled, some quite small, thanks to an extraordinarily patient, generous soul in Portland. It is wonderful to see just how much more is available to us these days.

I grew up eating bright orange, individually wrapped slices of processed American cheese. They were in my lunch box nearly every single day. Now it is hard to imagine a life without real Parmigiano-Reggiano, and American cheese includes not only the British-inspired blocks and rounds such as Cheddars, but all kinds of goat cheeses. At the moment, I can't think of domestic cheeses made from ewe's milk. Do we have any?

If I had to choose one favorite newly discovered cheese it would have to be Montasio. It took me a while to find a local source, but now I love frico.
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#51 Pan

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Posted 25 July 2006 - 09:48 AM

Klary, is it common for people to chew up the whole cloves in the Friese nagelkaas, or are they usually taken out?

#52 spaghetttti

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Posted 25 July 2006 - 07:38 PM

gfron1, what a great idea for a topic! Thank you for starting this!

A few weeks ago I went through Schiphol Airport and picked up some cheeses. The first one I got was a breathtakingly gorgeous young Gouda which was promptly gobbled up. Excellent.

This is a herbed Gouda, which is slightly salted with a tang.
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I haven't opened this one up yet.


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Does anyone know how this will taste? Klary, what you do think?
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#53 Kent D

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Posted 25 July 2006 - 08:56 PM

I don't have ready access to fine cheeses (although the selection is getting better in the grocery stores, but no cheese shops), but I once had a 3-year white cheddar from Canada that I somehow overlooked in my refrigerator for another 18 months -- Good Lord, that was a cheddar to bring tears to your eyes. But I've never been subtle in my cheese choices, I like to nibble slices of asiago as a snack, and I've got my 6-year-old daughter asking for "stinky cheese" from the store. Both my daughters enjoyed some Marigold goat cheese I ordered from the Netherlands that has marigold flower petals in it.
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#54 Nishla

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Posted 25 July 2006 - 09:28 PM

Indeed there are. Some members live in the Netherlands.. where you can get excellent cheese by the way  :smile: :



I'm definitely going to have to keep an eye on your posts. I think I mentioned it in the dinner thread, but I have a friend from the Netherlands who keeps bringing over huge hunks of cheese...except he's allergic to cheese! I'll have to pass along any good suggestions for his next visit :wink:

#55 Chufi

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 05:21 AM

Klary, is it common for people to chew up the whole cloves in the Friese nagelkaas, or are they usually taken out?

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Yes, you eat them. They are somewhat mellower from aging in the cheese, but still have a very pronounced aroma, which is why this cheese is not to everyone's taste!

I haven't opened this one up yet.

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Does anyone know how this will taste?  Klary, what you do think?

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from the looks of it, I would guess it's a quite young gouda-style goats cheese. It should be rich, smooth, buttery and tangy. Please report when you've opened it up!

#56 Chufi

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 05:53 AM

I'm definitely going to have to keep an eye on your posts.  I think I mentioned it in the dinner thread, but I have a friend from the Netherlands who keeps bringing over huge hunks of cheese...except he's allergic to cheese! I'll have to pass along any good suggestions for his next visit  :wink:

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Nishla, what kind of cheese do you like? mature, young, cow, goat? Blue? There is an excellent Dutch blue cheese called Bleu de Wolvega.. I love it. Ofcourse you can't go wrong with some good aged Gouda as shown above..

#57 Dave Hatfield

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 07:38 AM

Klary, is it common for people to chew up the whole cloves in the Friese nagelkaas, or are they usually taken out?

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Yes, you eat them. They are somewhat mellower from aging in the cheese, but still have a very pronounced aroma, which is why this cheese is not to everyone's taste!

I haven't opened this one up yet.

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Does anyone know how this will taste?  Klary, what you do think?

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from the looks of it, I would guess it's a quite young gouda-style goats cheese. It should be rich, smooth, buttery and tangy. Please report when you've opened it up!

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Went to their website, but this cheese wasn't mentioned. Really cusious now. Do Tell.

#58 Chufi

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 08:28 AM

It is on their website, here (scroll down to the 8th from the top) The packaging is a little less yellow than in spaghettti's pic, but I think it's the same cheese.

#59 Dave Hatfield

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 08:38 AM

Here's a discussion topic; traditional cheeses vs modern cheeses. As I look at the cheese scene in France & the Uk I see lots of 'new' cheeses. Some seem really new & others new local variations of the old well established standards.

Some of the new cheeses are awful in my opinion, Montsalvy for instance, others are very good I think. For example; St Augur.

When I went online to look for information about Saint Agur (sehnt ah-GOOR), a popular French blue cheese, I ended up, after much perseverance, in an unexpected place: on the Web site of the French dairy giant Bongrain. I had suspected that Saint Agur was an industrial cheese, but I had no idea that it was of such recent vintage (1988) or that it had so many prominent siblings.



One the other hand the same company has totally wrecked what used to be one of my favorite blue cheeses, Blue de Bresse.

At the same time many of the traditional cheeses have suffered from sloppy making and over production. For example; there's brie & then there's brie!

I'd love to hear the opinions of others and your experiences both good & bad. Maybe we can can up with a multinational list of edible cheeses & their producers.

#60 Muffinzz

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 09:19 AM

I'm still thinking about the cloves in the Friese nagelkaas. I think the clove flavor would be marvelous, but I'm not sure about the texture of the cloves themselves. Chufi, do they soften in texture as they sit in the cheese, or is the texture similar to chewing on a clove straight out of a spice jar?