Tag Archives: fromage

Cheesy Gift Guide From The House Mouse Part 4 – Cheese Knives & Boards

Mice Cheese Knife Set from first Christmas with The Hubby's family

Mice Cheese Knife Set from first Christmas with The Hubby’s family

My very first Christmas with The Hubby and his family, I received a bunch of cheese-centric gifts from just about everyone and was touched by their thoughtfulness. I loved each item and the person who took the time and care to find them for me. It had nothing to do with how much they cost, or where they came from, it was all about the heart and love that went into the gift. I was the new girl, the crazy cheese-loving stranger in their home who they didn’t know from anyone, yet they knew one thing: I loved cheese. And they love cheese too, which made finding gifts a bit easier. So what is an easy gift for that cheese lover on the list? The one thing no fromage freak can ever have too much of? Cheese knives and boards! I know it’s getting late for Christmas shopping and the weather outside is pretty darn frightful, but these suggestions are easy and probably available right in that neighborhood gift shop you’ve walked by a dozen or so times and never stopped in. Well, why not stop in today? Continue reading

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Cheesy Gift Guide From The House Mouse Part 2 – Books

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Books have always been a huge part of my life – my parents encouraging my reading with trips to the library and bookstore on a weekly basis. I’ll never forget the time my mom got an angry call from my fourth grade teacher complaining about my refusal to participate in recess activities in order to sit under a tree with my new copy of I, Trissy by Norma Fox Mazer. My mother didn’t even respond. She just hung up the phone, came right up to the school (only four blocks away), sat down under the tree with me with her own book, glared up at the teacher and then proceeded to read right along with me. I thought my teacher was going to spit nails, but she just crossed her arms and stomped off. A great memory for sure, and yet another reason books have always been one of my favorite gifts to receive. Cheese books have become a particular passion now that I’m older and can appreciate them, and this year’s batch of fromage reads is pretty snazzy. I will admit to only owning one on my list of book gifts so should anyone wish to play secret cheesy Santa.

Okay, here we go for Cheesy Gift Guide Part 2 – Books: 

A quick note: all titles are available on both amazon.com and bn.com, however I encourage everyone to seek out local bookstores or click on the links to the websites and purchase directly from the author or the link. Shop local and support the community. If you want to buy big box and use a discount, head out to your local Barnes & Noble brick and mortar and save a job like mine. Alright, preaching done. Here we go!

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Cheesy Gift Guide from The House Mouse Part 1 – T-Shirts

Cheesy Christmas t-shirt from Cafepress.com

Cheesy Christmas t-shirt from Cafepress.com

Happy December 1 and welcome to SHOPPING THUNDERDOME! Yes, my cheesy friends, it’s holiday time and with the miracle of Thanksgivukkah coming so late that means we all have even less time franticly figure out what to get Aunt Fran and Cousin Lou for Festivus! Fear not, my fromage-loving fans, for The House Mouse is here to assist. Since my brilliant surgeon has demanded I take it slow and steady, I am using my time wisely to create a cheesy list of turophile gift ideas to share with all of you. Everything from the straight forward  to the obscure, this list will have just about everything and price ranges from stocking stuffer to YOU MUST REALLY LOVE ME!?

Today’s selections are the ever-popular T-shirts  as I like to call them, cheesewear. This list by no means represents the dozens upon dozens of cheese related shirts I found. this year. These are the highlights:

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A Cheesy Confession

Me when I was younger_0012

Me with a busted arm when I was 10, but you get the point.

This has probably been the hardest post I have ever written since I began writing The House Mouse back in 2009. All the starts and stops, the interruptions and scrapped drafts, the frustrations and not knowing what to say have nearly driven me mad. I mean, I started this post back in May! I finally decided to just stop dancing around and come clean about why I’ve been so silent. This is really hard to say…
I, The House Mouse, am having a hard time eating cheese.  Just writing the words makes me so sad and sick to my stomach both literally and figuratively! I have rebelled against my body for so long and it finally caught up with me in pretty dramatic form. Continue reading

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Chocolate and Cheese for Valentine’s Day? Yes and no

Is there any better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than with two of the best flavors on earth? Cheese and chocolate sounds like the ideal taste of love for any fromagophile, so The Mouse decided give it a go and to shoot for the cheese cupid. Murray’s Cheese collaborated with Mast Brothers chocolates and Champlain Valley Triple Cream to create Love at Mast (top center). Was this a match made in heaven? Well….

As a major dark chocolate and Champlain Valley Triple Cream fan, The Mouse was really excited to get this cheesy love fest of goodness.  The slight bitterness of the sea salt chocolate combined with the sweet cream of the cheese seemed like it would be a match made in dairy heaven. Unfortunately, the flavor left me somewhat underwhelmed. The sweetness of the cheese just completely overpowered the salty chocolate and the texture, while soft, lacked the usual lushness found in a triple cream. I will confess that The Mouse is a purist when it comes to cheese so I would still encourage those who are curious to give it a try.

(also pictured Coeur de Bray from Murray’s Cheese and Hudson Valley Camembert  from Artisanal Cheese)

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It’s National Cheese Lovers Day! Where do you get your curds?

Happy National Cheese Lovers Day! Last year, The Mouse was pleasantly surprised to discover that there was a holiday just for fromagephiles to pay homage to the blessed curd. A full twenty-four hours to bask in the glow of some Basque or any cheese of choice. So, what’s a cheese lover to do when upon opening the refrigerator door on National Cheese Lovers Day and finds that the cheese safe is bare? Fear not, for The Mouse has a brief list of shops to help restock for the celebration. Continue reading

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Anthony Bourdain and Erik Ripert visit cheese shop Marie-Anne Cantin

Anthony Bourdain arguably has one of the best jobs on earth.  He travels the globe, tastes indigenous cuisine, and is given access to places most of us can only dream of seeing. Bourdain’s job is not for the faint of heart or stomach, and his excursions can sometimes be downright dangerous (see No Reservations, Beirut 2006 , for example) but for the most part, Bourdain is rewarded with fantastic local fare and envy-inspiring experiences.  This would be the case on his recent visit to France when Bourdain and fellow chef, Erik Ripert, dropped in at Marie-Anne Cantin, one of  Paris’s most renowned cheese shops. Continue reading

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Do you Chabichou or Charollais Affine? A goat cheese tasting

It’s August and that means it’s National Goat Cheese Month, so what better way to celebrate than with a little goat cheese tasting!  Chabichou and Charollais Affine, may look similar, but these tiny cylanders of goodness have some distinct personalities. Continue reading

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Pushing the Bliss: Aged Constant Bliss

Constant Bliss by Jasper Hill Farm aged one month in cheese safe

As a cheesemonger-in-training, I typically follow the rules when handling my cheese selections. Fresh fromages like chevres should be served sooner rather than later, age gouda can be stored up to a few months with proper care and temperature control, etc. There are reasons for these rules, including preserving integrity of the taste and complexity of the rind or control of the acidity, and I respect them. However, there comes a time when I throw caution to the wind to see just how far I can take a cheese, how long I can let it mature before it goes past its prime. Such is the case with my recent purchase of Jasper Hill’s Constant Bliss.

For those not in the know, Constant Bliss was the first cheese produced at Jasper Hill Farm in Greensboro, VT. This complex fromage is made from pasteurized, uncooled evening milk of the farm’s Ayrshire cows and aged a mere 60 days.  Most recognize Constant Bliss by its bloomy white rind which hides a creamy underlayer of fatty paste, followed by a more substantial and pillowy center. In its early stage, each layer has a distinct flavor, the delicate rind is earthy without being too assertive, followed by the thin layer of sweet cream, ending in a lemony center. By aging my wheel for a month in my cheese safe, not only did the flavors intensify, but the actual structure of the cheese took on a whole new life. A fantastically mouth-watering life. Continue reading

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Super Bowl Homage to Fromage!

As we all know, this Sunday the Green Bay Packers will go cheese head to head with the Pittsburgh Steelers. I’m not much of a football fan, but I can’t help being a bit excited for this years games for two reasons. First, I’m a Clevelander and I would love to see the Steelers lose, just cuz. Second, I love Wisconsin cheese whenever cheese can stand alone on top, I’m for it.

There are those who are pretty psyched for the game, especially those Packer fans. Some go to pretty amazing lengths to show team spirit and Mary VanderLeest of Minneapolis is no exception. She and her neighbor, Curtis Johnson constructed a gigantic snow wedge of Swiss on her front lawn in honor of the Packers.

Check out the video here for the full story. Go Cheese! I mean, Packers!

Homage to Fromage

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