Quick Bites: Perail

Perail from Fromagerie Papillon: Photo by The House Mouse

Perail from Fromagerie Papillon: Photo by The House Mouse

Perail hails from the Aveyron region of France, where Roquefort is produced in a region that has a long history of sheep herding. There are many theories of how Perail came to be in existence. Stories range from the bloomy brie-like sheep’s milk wheels being created during low milk production, to shepherds holding back small amounts of milk from the larger Roqufort producers and creating the small pure sheep milk cheese in their homes for their families and neighbors. Whatever the stories and history may be, we are fortunate to have this tasty treat available to snack on now.

Perail at room temp. aged

Perail at room temp. fully ripened

Perail is a pasteurized sheep’s milk cheese with a thin, bloomy rind and soft, pale paste. When young, the interior is more firm and mild in flavor and the grassy notes are very apparent. Allow it to get a bit more ripe, which is what I did, and the rind collapses a bit, the “sheepy” barnyard flavors intensify, and the grassy, buttery, and sweet flavors come alive. Pair Perail with a light white or sparkling bubbly wine or perhaps a crisp hard cider.

3 Comments

Filed under Cheese

3 responses to “Quick Bites: Perail

  1. French cheese really is the best. I love how much variety there is.

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  2. One of the reasons for producing Pérail as well as Pavé de l’Aveyron is, of course, diversification to use ewe milk from Shepherd flock.
    But it is also a kind of obligation as, at end of lactation, ewe milk contain too much fat and is not suitable to make Roquefort which need a minimum of two month of affinage.

    Like

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