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)
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
Wishing everyone a happy, healthy, and cheesy-good holiday!
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
As we roll in to summer, The House Mouse will be bringing some new and exciting cheese stories from around the country and perhaps around the globe. While waiting with baited cheese breath, here’s a little something to brighten the day. Pinky, the silly and daft sidekick in the cartoon “Pinky and the Brain” gives a shout out to all the cheeses of the world. Stay Cheesy!
The Fabulous Beekman Boys on Planet Green
It’s been a long, long, LONG seven months while we Beek-Heads waited for Season 2 of The Fabulous Beekman Boys to begin on Planet Green. Well, the wait is over and Brent, Josh, Farmer John, and that diva Polka Spot are hitting the airways tonight with even more goaty goodness.What started out as a simple show about sustainable living has morphed into a fruitful frenzy of fanatical fans following the boys via television, books (The Bucolic Plague), website, and even a goat-cam.
It’s Valentine’s Day! Do you have a gift for that special cheesy somebody? Flowers and candy are fine, but if an impression is what you seek, look no further than your local cheesemonger’s case for some Coeur de Neufchatel.
Almost as old as love itself, Coeur de Neufchatel has been around since the 6th century and got its heart shape from lovesick French farm maidens during the Hundred Year War who gave their hearts to the fighting soldiers.
This AOC French cheese comes from a Normandie breed of cow, which may not be all sexy and romantic, but it does aide to the unique flavor which any cheese lover will enjoy. Coeur de Neufchatel is crumbly than creamy with a mushroomy flavor that wafts in the mouth without being over powering, although it can be left to age for a more intense taste. Grab a crusty French baguette, some hearty Cabernet, and some tart berries and you have an appetizer for love.
Whatever your plans, have a Happy Cheesy Valentine’s Day!