In Favor of Cheese

We have the very good fortune to have some very generous neighbors. A woman with whom Janine plays cards one night a week most weeks gave us three cheeses earlier this week. Because I want to remember them for future reference (if I can find them—these were sent to her by distant progeny), I am writing about them here.

Abondance: A semi-hard raw milk cheese made in France. It is aged for a minimum of ninety days on specially produced spruce boards. According to “It has a strong smell and an intensely fruity, buttery and hazelnut flavour, with balance of acidity and sweetness, followed by a lingering aftertaste. Unearth an aroma of nutty vegetation as you slice the cheese. However, remember the crust including the gray layer beneath, should be removed before eating.”  Though I agree with the description, I did not remove the crust; I like the crust as much as the cheese.

Cabra la Prudenciana: This Spanish cheese is a stronger, more powerful cheese than the Abondance, but I like it as much. Janine is not as fond of it as I; this is good, as I get to eat the rest of it. According to Zuercher Cheese on Tumblr, “Cabra La Prudenciana has a compact paste with tiny eye formation. Although slightly granular at first, it warms up nicely on the palate. Unexpectedly buttery for a goat’s milk cheese, Cabra La Prudenciana reminds one of its sheepy cousins. We are especially delighted that this cheese remains unpasteurized. The flavor begins with a fresh, tangy, salty bite, then lingers and mellows into a goaty, herbal finish.”

Shepherd’s Blend: This cheese, from Carr Valley Cheese Company in Wisconsin, is a sheep, goat and cow milk cheese cured for 10 weeks, so says the Carr Valley Cheese website. They go on to say “it has a soft body and a subtle, complex flavor. Excellent melting cheese and great in any recipe!”

I had samples of each this afternoon, along with a few large green olives stuffed with garlic and jalapeño. It was the appropriate snack for the day, for me, and for this century. It just worked.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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One Response to In Favor of Cheese

  1. Woods Swinburn says:

    The post about the cheeses was a nice read and made me hungry for some interesting cheese. While in France last summer I enjoyed a variety of cheeses and olives, all of which were a treat. So, when I returned home, I bought several types of cheese and a variety of olives. I had forgotten, prior to the trip to France, how much I enjoyed both of those food items… now that I remember… every time I go to the grocery store I buy some more of each. What a treat.

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