Cheese Admiration and Celebration

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  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,332 Member
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    This week's cheese is Manchego Anejo. It is far more delicious than the goat milk cheddar "style" cheese from last week.

    This is a sheep milk cheese, but it actually has more flavor than the goat cheddar. It's aged 12 months, so it's got a nice sharpness. Not rubbery. Quite nice. I had room in my calorie budget for a nice dessert of two whole ounces of the stuff, and I actually could have a third if I want, but I think I'll wait until tomorrow.

    I've had this cheese before, and I've always liked it. I decided to splurge yesterday and treat myself to something nice. Glad I did.

    That wasn't this week's only splurge. Today I walked to the fishmonger; Dungeness crab season has started, and this fishmonger also has some fishing boats. I went Sunday; they were out. They are closed Monday and Tuesday. Today they had nice filled out two-pounders. So I got one. Good prices because it's the beginning of the season even though it started late. They get to keep all the money since there's no middleman; they sell direct to me instead of a wholesaler. And while I was there, they had smoked salmon collars, so I had to get those too. I ate one and saved one. Oh. So. Good. It's not cheese, but it is still a treat.

    The manchego anejo is fantastic too.

  • springlering62
    springlering62 Posts: 7,551 Member
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    This is probably my favourite and most common use of Halloumi (partly because if I griddle it I could eat an entire block at once…). It browns in the oven on the top of some sort of vegetable bake type thing. Today’s is a mix of courgette, mushrooms and orange & yellow peppers, in a Middle Eastern style tomato base. Spices were cumin, chilli flakes, turmeric and smoked paprika. The cheese soaks up the flavour from the sauce yet gets browned and crispy on the top. Salty, chewy and delicious!

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    💡💡💡💡💡
  • neanderthin
    neanderthin Posts: 9,952 Member
    edited January 2023
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    joans1976 wrote: »
    Every year I get together with a few friends and share Epoisses de Bourgogne with freshly made bread and I paired it with a gewurztraminer. I heat it up in the wooden box and it's like having a fondue lol. It's now 7 years and counting that I do this. Cheers

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    🤤🤤🤤
    Epoisses is one of my favourite cheeses, and gewürztraminer is my favourite wine, together with Pomerol (and yes, of all things, Retsina). It would also pair very nicely with Orval (one of only about 5 surviving genuine Trappist beers) Delectable. Since all of these are off the menu for me, I am using nattou instead. It isn't quiTe the same, but the closest I have been able to get so far. I have not been able to find a good replacement for the wine, so high quality green tea has to fill that gap for now. I am guessing that something like a robust Earl Grey or Irish Breakfast tea could be good candidates, but I have never tried it.

    Yes, goes well with cold amber beauties, no doubt about it and have paired epoisse with beer in the past. Cheers.
  • sandielewis2001
    sandielewis2001 Posts: 318 Member
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    My wife just found this event happening near us in March. I am seriously contemplating taking that Friday off from work so we can enjoy the tours…

    https://www.artisancheesefestival.com/

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  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 32,381 Member
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    @sandielewis2001 - If you do decide to go, please report back . . . with photos if permitted and you're willing!

    YumYumYum!
  • neanderthin
    neanderthin Posts: 9,952 Member
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    If it's not goat it's not feta :D
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 32,381 Member
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    I like my local farmstead creamery's feta. It is goat. It maybe isn't . . . classic? I'm not sure. But I love it, more than any other feta I've ever had, and that's good enough for me.
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  • neanderthin
    neanderthin Posts: 9,952 Member
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    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    I like my local farmstead creamery's feta. It is goat. It maybe isn't . . . classic? I'm not sure. But I love it, more than any other feta I've ever had, and that's good enough for me.
    hivjdfjljj79.jpg

    I think anytime a local product is available that represents the product honestly with high standards you can't go wrong. In Ontario there's dozens of goat farmers making artisan products like feta. Of course these aren't goats munching on the grasses of the mountainous terrains in Greece but I've compared the Greek offerings and find the local Ontario to be better. I'd imagine much like the best local wines of Italy or France they aren't finding their way to the supermarkets very often, but I'm sure they are around. Cheers
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,332 Member
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    We interrupt the artisan cheese appreciation thread to bring this average-consumer grocery store bulletin.

    Lidl (USA) is now carrying a new Feta brand called Dodoni. Label says “most popular brand in Greece”.

    That may not seem like a big deal, but Athena is kinda tasteless and has pretty much had the market to themselves. I beleive their label also claims “most popular brand in Greece.”

    The Dodoni is very good- creamy and tasty. And still same 70 cal/ ounce.

    It is the closest to the feta cubes that came in jars at Lidl (German) I lucked into several years ago that still sets my standard.

    I am a fan of Valbreso feta. Sheep milk, so @neanderthin would pass it over. That's OK. More for us.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,332 Member
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    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    I like my local farmstead creamery's feta. It is goat. It maybe isn't . . . classic? I'm not sure. But I love it, more than any other feta I've ever had, and that's good enough for me.
    hivjdfjljj79.jpg

    I think anytime a local product is available that represents the product honestly with high standards you can't go wrong. In Ontario there's dozens of goat farmers making artisan products like feta. Of course these aren't goats munching on the grasses of the mountainous terrains in Greece but I've compared the Greek offerings and find the local Ontario to be better. I'd imagine much like the best local wines of Italy or France they aren't finding their way to the supermarkets very often, but I'm sure they are around. Cheers

    Kind of like the "Halloumi-style" cheese my friend gave me a few weeks ago. There's a local cheesemaker that does some things like raw milk curds, raw milk cheeses, and that Halloumi-style cheese. It's clearly not Halloumi since it's not from Cyprus, and it's also not Halloumi because it's only cow milk. But it's made walking distance from my house.

    I think I'll get some feta on my next outing, although I'm for sure loving that sheep Manchego anejo. I can treat myself to both if I really wish.

  • neanderthin
    neanderthin Posts: 9,952 Member
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    mtaratoot wrote: »
    We interrupt the artisan cheese appreciation thread to bring this average-consumer grocery store bulletin.

    Lidl (USA) is now carrying a new Feta brand called Dodoni. Label says “most popular brand in Greece”.

    That may not seem like a big deal, but Athena is kinda tasteless and has pretty much had the market to themselves. I beleive their label also claims “most popular brand in Greece.”

    The Dodoni is very good- creamy and tasty. And still same 70 cal/ ounce.

    It is the closest to the feta cubes that came in jars at Lidl (German) I lucked into several years ago that still sets my standard.

    I am a fan of Valbreso feta. Sheep milk, so @neanderthin would pass it over. That's OK. More for us.

    :D I wouldn't be passing up any sheep feta for sure. Actually sheep is used a lot with goat milk to make feta but not sure why, probably a business descision.
  • springlering62
    springlering62 Posts: 7,551 Member
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    Well, after a feta shortage here for a year or two following the pandemic, I’m happy as hell to see feta back on the “regular” shelves.

    We have a fabulous local farmer market, however, it’s dog central, and the High Anxiety Dog can’t handle the sensory overload.

    Is it nonsensical of me to say I’m too lazy to drive to Whole Foods because it’s not within walking distance?
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,332 Member
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    Well, after a feta shortage here for a year or two following the pandemic, I’m happy as hell to see feta back on the “regular” shelves.

    We have a fabulous local farmer market, however, it’s dog central, and the High Anxiety Dog can’t handle the sensory overload.

    Is it nonsensical of me to say I’m too lazy to drive to Whole Foods because it’s not within walking distance?

    Well, I think nobody would fault you if you said you didn't want to drive to "Bezos Foods" even if it's close enough to walk. It's great to have stores close enough to walk or bike. I do some shopping by car, but I also have two groceries in walking distance and a bigger one that I can get to by bike without being on an actual road for very long at all. Most of the way is multi-modal path. Of the 3.75 miles each way, only about 0.6 are on a street, and it's a very minor street with a wide bike lane. There's a shorter route that goes through a park on another less-busy street, but the "long way" is a scenic bike path by one of our rivers.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,332 Member
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    After all this talk of feta, I went to the local co-op and splurged. Members get 10% off one day per month, and I hadn't used my discount yet.

    I actually looked at some different kinds of feta at Trader Joe's and another grocery I stopped at. Trader Joe's had two sheep feta cheeses. I decided to pass. The next grocery had some sealed-in-plastic feta from cow milk. I also passed. So the co-op had Valbreso in bulk, so I got some. In brine. I have had this before, so I knew I would like it. They also had a goat feta from California sealed in plastic, so I splurged and got that, too. I'll save that one and dig in to the Valbreso... probably starting tonight.

    I couldn't leave the Manchego Anejo either. Especially since they had one piece that was priced as a palindrome. So I am now cheese rich. With RICH CHEESE! Now let's see if I can manage to eat it a little at a time like I've been able to do with that Manchego, the goat cheddar before that, and the Cambozola before that. I bet I can do it. Of course that's my bet or I wouldn't have brought it all home.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 32,381 Member
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    @Neanderthin, I'd reach through the screen and grab one of those beauties if that were possible. Yum!

    Here on the home front:

    We've all heard about the dangers of grocery shopping when hungry. Well, yeah. But it was convenient to hit some shops on my way home from physical therapy today. The result (among other (non-cheese) goodness):

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    From upper left, top row is Spring Koe double cream gouda, Cambozola (obviously!), Mitica drunken goat, Hickory Knoll (local farmstead) tomato-basil-garlic chevre; bottom row is Hickory Knoll goat "cheddar", and a couple of hunks of Lite Jarlsberg (a staple of mine as a tasty "protein supplement") which was on sale so I bought as much as I thought I'd use before it would mold.

    Other than the Jarlsberg, they're small-ish pieces, but there's only one of me, so I'll be eating cheese pretty often for a while. Shucks.

  • acpgee
    acpgee Posts: 7,655 Member
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    Hubby suggests opening the Vacharin on the weekend. We are taking it out of the fridge tomorrow.