Becoming A Cheese
It’s thrilling to be a part of Birth of a Cheese 2012 and want to thank Culture Magazine and Jasper Hill Farm for this opportunity.
With the cheese came a questionnaire to fill out with initial reactions to appearance, aroma, texture and taste. Wanting to impress, I found that challenging. Hopefully, the good folks at Jasper Hill won’t shake their heads and wonder about choosing me, “What were we thinking?”
Most of the cheese I taste is at the peak of its age and as the cheese maker wanted it enjoyed. To taste young cheese and then “follow” its aging is a special treat.
The three samples were in various stages of aging; all young; all on the way to becoming cheese… let me rephrase that… all on the way to becoming great cheese.
The paste of all three is a gorgeous bright straw, indicating to me that JHF used raw milk. The rind on all three was slightly sticky and progressively brighter pink with age. The first sample had a hint of hay and the third had a hint of citrus both in aroma and taste.
The taste of all three was young; as I said above… on the way to being cheese; but not there yet. All were mellow with varying degrees of flavors emerging. The first was mellow, mild and ever so slightly buttery. In the second, a nuttiness began to emerge and The Man picked up sweet notes. The third had a sour cream with lemon flavors. As this cheese ages, I’m sure we’ll taste even more flavors and notes.
After sampling “naked”, The Man, The Cat and I then added some crackers and wild strawberry preserves from Croatia. We found the cheeses to be rich and filling, leaving lots for future uses.
For Mother’s Day, I used 111228 in a mac n cheese. That recipe follows.
I am a member of the Murray’s Cheese Set-up Team for Kroger. I travel setting up the new Murray’s Cheese Shops opening in Kroger, King Soopers, QFC and soon Fred Meyer. Before landing my dream job, I was a Cheesemonger for Fred Meyer, another dream job. My cat, Spaulding Gray (aka The Feline Foodie) and I write about cheese and our cheese adventures at Marcellathecheesemonger.com where I will be cross-posting my thoughts on all three cheeses. – Marcella.