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Fromage Blanc


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You can get Fromage Blanc by The Vermont Butter and Cheese Company. A number of cheese and gourmet shops should have it.

Laidback - where are you located - - I may be able to direct you to a store.

Tonight i may actually make my own for the first time - -

"Of all places, only at the table is the first hour never dull."

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For a few years I have enjoyed fromage blanc as a refreshing warm weather treat, especially for dessert with honey or a fruit coulis. I haven't found this in the USA; does it exist under a different name there?

This is really Pti's rayon, but I'll venture that the dictionairies (Robert & Collins, A-Z of French Food, etc) are not 100% accurate when they translate fromage blanc as cottage cheese. And while the Chef’s Thesaurus says that “fresh goat cheese is like fromage blanc, only made with goat’s milk," I still frown. But why not buy the real thing? A quick search shows that in 1988, the NYT says that fromage blanc, a very smooth cottage cheese, is now being made in the US by the Vermont Butter and Cheese Company, in Brookfield, VT and Brier Run Farm in Birch River, W.Va., and both are sold at Zabar’s, so now 20 years later, they must be available elsewhere. It would appear one can order some from amazon.com and Williams & Sonoma. And, it's available, even in California. For example a San Diego writer Lynn Alley in the San Diego Union-Tribune, describes one from Laura Chenel in Sonoma and another from Emily Thomson Fromage de Chèvre in Ojai. Happy hunting.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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In case it's still time to add my two cents, fromage blanc is only fresh cow's milk curds at the very first stage of cheesemaking. Though the process is very simple, I haven't found any equivalent of it outside of France. It is definitely not cottage cheese. It comes in two different states: soft and smooth (fromage blanc lissé), which means it has been beaten. In its most natural state it comes in a faisselle (a cheese strainer) and you can buy it like that, with the strainer in the carton.

A mix of plain whipped cream and smooth fromage blanc is called fontainebleau or crémet;

Strained, firmed-up fromage blanc with added cream is "fromage double-crème" or "fromage à la crème" and it is a type of cream cheese (Carré Frais Gervais is a good example);

Petit-Suisse is slightly strained fromage blanc with cream added; it is sold in small cylinders wrapped in paper.

Fresh goat cheese will never be called "fromage blanc" but simply "chèvre frais".

A good traditional way to serve fromage blanc lissé is to whip it with vanilla sugar. That is the way it used to be served in school refectories.

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In case it's still time to add my two cents, fromage blanc is only fresh cow's milk curds at the very first stage of cheesemaking. Though the process is very simple, I haven't found any equivalent of it outside of France. It is definitely not cottage cheese. It comes in two different states: soft and smooth (fromage blanc lissé), which means it has been beaten. In its most natural state it comes in a faisselle (a cheese strainer) and you can buy it like that, with the strainer in the carton.

A mix of plain whipped cream and smooth fromage blanc is called fontainebleau or crémet;

Strained, firmed-up fromage blanc with added cream is "fromage double-crème" or "fromage à la crème" and it is a type of cream cheese (Carré Frais Gervais is a good example);

Petit-Suisse is slightly strained fromage blanc with cream added; it is sold in small cylinders wrapped in paper.

Fresh goat cheese will never be called "fromage blanc" but simply "chèvre frais".

A good traditional way to serve fromage blanc lissé is to whip it with vanilla sugar. That is the way it used to be served in school refectories.

Thanks everyone; I live on the central West coast of Florida, not exactly a cheese paradise. Ptipois, you were as usual, the beacon of lucid info. I like it lissé and as faisselle, mainly as a dessert, thus my preference for either honey or a fruit coulis. Thanks.

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Hi Margaret!

If you've tried this recipe, is the 1 cup of heavy whipped cream really optional in order to achieve a successful result?

The Cowgirl Creamery also sells fromage blanc at their store in the Ferry Market Bldg (San Francisco).

Thanks for the info, Ptipois!

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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UPDATE: made my fromage blanc from scratch and it worked out well.

Heated milk to 85 - - added starter purchased from New England Cheese Making Supplies - - let it sit for 12 hours. Let it drain in fine cheese cloth for six hours.

First day was quite tangy - though i used cow's milk (organic - pasteurized - homogenized) it had a goaty/yogurty taste.

Second day it became sweeter.

Used 1/2 gal of milk - - yeilded a lot of cheese, so have been giving it away - -have been puttng it on bread - also mixing in some herbs.

Easy to make and wonderful!

"Of all places, only at the table is the first hour never dull."

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