French Cheese & May Cheese Giveaway

brebisrousse

Just in case you haven’t caught up with us in the social media world, we are running a cheese giveaway for the month of May – Connect with us on our Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, and you just might win a box of one of the best French collections we’ve put together! A variety of sheep, goat and cows milk! Each cheese is very distinct , yet everyone is equally as tasty!  We’d recommend that you start with Brebis Rousse, and work your way towards Roquefort. However, you can’t go wrong with mixing and matching!

Brebis Rousse – Buttery, salty, and creamy!  This washed rind sheep’s milk cheese is a little bit of an oddity since it’s not easy finding a sheep’s cheese of this nature.  This cheese is extremely smooth, and has a similar consistency to some very runny double creams bries also coming out of France. This is a fantastic after dinner treat!

Selles Sur Chers – Coming out of the Loire River Valley, Selles Sur Chers has a slight goat tone  to it, but its versatility pleases introductory goat cheese eaters or  goat cheese enthusiasts! The vegetable ash on the outside is edible, and doesn’t change the taste of the cheese, as it’s essentially there to protect it! This is the perfect cheese for a Spring afternoon and a bottle of your go-to chardonnay!

Morbier – From the Franche-Comte region, is a semi-soft washed rind, with vegetable ash running through the centre. This was traditionally made from evening and morning milk. As farmers occasionally had left over curd from Comte production. Farmers would pour the remaining curd into a bucket and covering it with vegetable ash to protect it from outside bacteria. The next day farmers would then fill the remainder of the bucket with curds produced that morning. This is a staple cheese that is great on its own, or with a little honey drizzled on slices!

Comte – Also from the Franche-Comte , Comte is essentially the French cousin of Gruyere. Same milk, just made on the other side of the Swiss border. Depending on where you’re from you will have a preference to choice, but you can never go wrong with French Comte! A great nutty and sweet taste, and also used for grating on onion soup or for finishing off a meal!

Roquefort – Probably one of the more intense blue cheeses you’ll meet. In southern France, Roquefort is aged in limestone caves, and gets its name from Penicillium roqueforti, the strain of mold that helps create the strong bluish/green veining in the cheese. It’s great in blue salad dressings,  and have heard it’s great pairing with shots of melted chocolate, but is also recommended to finish off a meal with Roquefort, by pairing it with Sauternes or bolder reds!

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Fleur du Maquis

Fleur du MaquisFlower of the Maquis

This Corsican creation is made from unpasturized sheep’s milk, and has the look of a little cheese pillow that has been rolled through the maquis of the Corsican hill sides. The maquis term has also been attributed to guerilla fighters that used to hide in the underbrush, giving this cheese a little more danger, and making it an interesting conversation piece.

The rind is encrusted with rosemary, fennel seeds, juniper berries, and topped with a chile. The paste is soft, creamy, herbal and slightly olivey making it a great addition to any French cheese board collection. When left to age, mold begins to develop on the outside, giving it a stronger nuttiness and floral finish. Esthetically it’s a beautiful creation, and an even tastier add-on to a Mediterranean theme dinner, or paired as a side with olives, peppers, tomatoes and a lighter red! We occasionally get some in, so stay tuned and we’ll let you know!

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The Canadian Cheese Awards

Taste of Cheese & La Ferme take part in The Canadian Cheese Awards!

Cheese of the year, Baluchon!

Cheese of the year, Baluchon!

Last week, The Canadian Cheese Awards took place in the North building at the St.Lawrence Market. Taste of Cheese and La Ferme Black River were an official sponsor, and had the opportunity to meet with many of the award winning cheese makers and had a moment to share their insight about the awards with CTV!

Baluchon, from Fromagerie FX Pichet Sainte-Anne-de-la-Perade, Quebec was named the grand winner as cheese of the year or as it’s called in French ‘fromage d’exeption’, yet with 16 other categories in place there were some other exceptional cheeses that came out on top from across Canada!  Louis d’Or  from Fromagerie du Presbytere, Quebec definitely stood out, taking three awards that night. ‘Best Firm Cheese’ (aka alpine style), ‘Best Raw Milk Cheese’ and ‘Best Quebec Cheese’.  This is super tasty creation has nutty and fruity notes which are very close in relation to its European cousins, Comte and Gruyere. So, it’s no wonder that it was awarded in three categories!

Two cheddar’s stood out and were a pair of close combatants, one winning ‘ Best Mild/Medium Cheddar’, Cheddar Ile-aux-Grues from S.C.A Isle-aux-Grues, L’Isle-aux-Grues, Quebec. An overall smooth cheddar aged for 9 months, and makes a great staple cheese to have on any cheese board. With Cows Creamery, Extra Old Cheddar out of Charlottetown PEI, aged for one year, faired well in two categories, ‘Best Old Cheddar’ and ‘Best Atlantic Canadian Cheese’. From the producers of the old world style cheddar, Avonlea Clothbound, Cows Creamery does an excellent job in cheddar production and demonstrates this with its full bodied extra old cheddar!

Rang de Iles, Medard!

Rang de Iles, Medard!

As to softer cheeses, Rang des iles from Fromagerie Medard in Saint-Gedeon, Quebec took the ‘Best Mixed Rind Cheese’. A younger cheese  aged for only 30 days, has a with a hint of sweetness and mushrooms, making it a great cheese for those who like a milder approach to cheese. Magie de Madawaska won ‘Best Soft Cheese/Bloomy Rind Cheese’, it’s a perfect cheese for those that want something a touch stronger in a soft cheese, and a bit similar in nature  to the European great, Munster Alsace. Earthy, meatier and a clearly present mushroom tone!

For the full list of winners in each category check out this link here. We’d love to hear your opinion on the awards, find us on Twitter, or Facebook and let us know your thoughts! With so many delicious award winners to choose from, we’re sure to pick out a few of the key winners and hopefully provide them in your next cheese delivery over the next couple months!

 

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BEAUTIFUL FOOD – OR IS IT ART??

Good afternoon, Cheese Lovers!!
Have you ever come across food so lovely that you might not even want to eat it? I love to eat beautiful food of all sorts, as often as possible! I thought that I would share with you a few bites of beauty that I’ve come across in the past little while. I started to think about how food can resemble art today while reading about the Girolle, a traditional tool used to shave rosettes of the Swiss cheese, Tete de Moine. The rosettes formed by the Girolle look like Chanterelle mushrooms, which happen to be known as Girolle in French (hence the name of the tool!) I love the delicate look of the cheesy rosettes! They look like they belong atop a corsage or a wedding cake! I don’t actually own a Girolle, and tried to make some rosettes using a knife, as it is said to have been done before Girolles were commonplace. I failed pretty miserably and didn’t want to post the embaressing pictures! Check out the pics below for some other fascinating food/art that has recently caught my eye!

Where have you found food that looks like a work of art??

Girolle

Girolle: Thanks to wikipedia.com for giving reader a perfect example of the delicate rosettes made by spinning the girolle blade round a Tete de Moine!

Latte Art

Behold this amazing work of art from Snakes and Lattes, on Bloor St. A friend ordered a Latte while we were playing board games and we were all surprised that this “cup of art” was delivered to our table! This one definitely scores in the “almost too amazing to eat” category! (She did drink it, of course)

Phipps Whipped Cake

In a world full of fantastical fondant covered cakes, this marble iced cake from Phipps Bakery (that I bought for my cousins wedding) was a delight to my eyes! The soft, buttery peaks were perfectly swirled, except for where I mushed the box into the side a little bit! It was a perfect addition to a rehearsal dinner sweet table! It was worth cutting into as it was a very yummy chocolate and vanilla cake inside! Only crumbs remained.

Cake Opera Nougat

A lovely treat from the Cake Opera, which I can’t help but mention again!!! Their nougat bars are worthy of being framed!!! (and then unframed, so that I can eat them!)                                                      

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Lovin’ the September Cheese!

Happy Friday Afternoon everyone!!

I hope that most of you read this later on today, because that means maybe you are outside right now enjoying this incredible day!!

I am writing to report that we chose our September cheese for the Taster and they are yummy yummy yummy!

Here are the September Taster Box Cheeses:
Bleu des Basques
Capricho Romarin
Chevrot Cendre
Louis d’Or
Soeur Angele

There are 2 that I’m SUPER excited about.. The Capricho Romarin and the Louis d’Or!

You might remember that I wrote about the Capricho Romarin in the past. I served it to a bunch of my friends and it was one of my favourite cheeses ever!! I am so excited that it is making a reappearance in September. The Capricho Romain is a Spanish Goat cheese that is not easy to come by. I can’t wait to dig into the yummy, creamy chevre flavoured by the delicate herbs that coat its rind. The second cheese that is making me extra excited is the Louis d’Or. Louis d’Or is new on my cheese-radar. It is a raw cow’s milk cheese that comes from the Fromagerie Presbytere in Quebec, similar in style to a comte. It has a warm, nutty flavour and a smooth texture. It is simply delightful!! I hope to get some more next week to get some pictures and real tasting notes on them!

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