Showing posts with label five tips. Show all posts
Showing posts with label five tips. Show all posts

Monday, October 5, 2009

Say Cheese for Five Cheese Tips!

Have you ever been to a cheese shop? A real cheese shop? Where the cheese monger is more than willing to cut a slice of cheese off for you to taste? At no charge? Where the scents of grasses and nuts and clovers waft through the air? It’s a heavenly experience. You owe yourself a trip.

When you’re there, see how the cheese monger wraps up the cheese for your trip home. I'll bet she (or he) doesn’t smother it in plastic wrap. She wraps it in paper so the cheese can breathe. Cheese heads, cheese makers, dairy scientists, (and authors) say cheese is a “living thing.” It needs to breathe. So here are a few tips that I've gleaned over the past year while writing The Cheese Shop Mysteries.

Tip #1: When you get home, if the store you bought from wrapped your cheese in plastic wrap, rewrap it in wax paper or parchment. That allows it to breathe but protects it from drying out in the fridge.

Tip #2: If it’s a smelly cheese, place the paper-wrapped wedge in a plastic container. That still gives it a little air to breathe.

Tip #3: Don’t store the cheese in the deli bin. Put it in the produce bin which has a higher humidity.

Tip #4: Taste the cheese at the store first, if you’re allowed. Wheels of cheese can vary and one could be “off” or overripe. Be particular.

Tip #5: Try not to buy too much cheese. {I know, this is difficult!!! LOL} But buy only what you will consume in one week. That’s right, one week. Cheese should be enjoyed as “fresh” as possible. (Sort of like fish.) However, in weeks to come, I'll give you a wonderful recipe for your "leftover" cheeses.

And now, may I offer you one of my favorite dishes. It’s a no-cook dish…serving my favorite cheeses with a lovely wine, adding some olives, a little candlelight, and voila.

For those of you on the run, I hope you’ll enjoy the simple pleasures of cheese.

Tonight’s serving:

St. Agur's Blue is a blue cheese made from cow’s milk. It was developed in 1988 in the Village of Monts du Velay, in the Auvergne region of France by the cheese company Bongrain. Because of it’s rich butterfat content, it qualifies as a double-cream cheese. It becomes spicier as it ages and doesn't have the bite of Stilton.

Campo de Montalban is a semi-firm Spanish Cheese made from a blend of cow, sheep and goats’ milk in La Mancha. It is like manchego in texture, though manchego is only sheeps’ milk.

Cypress Grove's Purple Haze, a goat's milk cheese with hints of lavender and fennel. I just made Portobello Mushroom "Naked Burger" with this cheese melted on top.

Remember: Offer a simple cracker. Spicy crackers might overwhelm the cheeses.

And tonight's wine:
Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc, from South Africa, yummy, with a bouquet of tropical fruit and citrus. And reasonably priced.


If you check out my website, Avery Aames, you'll find more recipes and histories of cheese and links to wonderful cheese sites!

Say Cheese!