Our Daily Dinner

Our Daily Dinner

April 25, 2010

Cheese Update

My cheese dinner entry brought a flood of responses from enthusiastic cheese lovers. With the exception of English Cheshire or a Cheddar, all of their favorite cheeses were French. High of the list were Reblochon, from Savoie, Epoisses from Burgundy, Camembert from Normandy, and Munster from Alsace—the crème de la crème of French cow’s milk cheeses--unpasteurized, all of them, hence unavailable here.

I could just as cheerfully compose an all Italian cheese plate; a Swiss or a Spanish one, or a combination of top European cheeses, not to forget our own American artisanal cheeses. And how about The Roaring Forties, that creamy, full-bodied cow’s milk blue cheese, named after the ferocious winds that whip around its native King Island south of Australia?

With your input I could compose a series of cheese dinners, each with its own libation. Please let me have your thoughts and suggestions.

3 comments:

Linda said...

Helen,
A series on cheese would be great!

Are there any sources of authentic, unpasteurized cheeses in the US? I believe the Epoisses I've had were Berthault.

Your comments have made me eager to try some authentic Munster cheese too. I had never thought of Munster as a particularly special cheese.

Our Daily Dinner said...

Linda,

I'd love to do a series on cheeses; they are a passion with me.
I never thought much of Munster either, until I tasted it in Strasbourg. And Brie or Epoisses? Forget it!
According to federal law, unpasteurized cheeses cannot be imported because they are thought to be harmful. They become legal, once they have been aged at least 60 days in a 35 degrees Fahrenheit environment. During this process, the cheese becomes more acidic, killing most potential sources of bacterial infection, while loosing its essential flavor.
There is one bright light. Recently Whole Food imported a Camembert, called Herve Mons Camembert, that although pasteurized,in texture and flavor comes close to the real McCoy. Harold McGee wrote about it in the Times. George immediately called Whole Food to inquire.
So far, we have been able to buy it twice. It was worth the Schlepp.
Helen

Linda said...

Hi again Helen,

I went to Union Sq. GreenMarket and bought sourdough bread and two raw milk cheeses from Cato Corner Farm. I'm going to have a tasting this afternnon but before I start, I wanted to review your past Cheese posts.

To my dismay, the original post has disappeared. do you know where it went or how to get it back? Help.
Linda