Sunday, February 28, 2010

Cheese, Cheese, Cheese

Sometimes, a well-stocked cheese counter can be overwhelming. With so many colors and consistencies or shapes and smells to choose from, how can you prevent a stinky cheese disaster? Each month, I continue my mission to explore my local cheese offerings, to seek out new flavors and sensations and to boldly try cheeses I've never tried before.

This month's cheese picks are random, but entertaining, mostly for reasons known only to me. Enjoy.

Old Chatham Sheepherding Company: Nancy's Hudson Valley Camembert. I know I should photo my cheeses all deliciously spread across some crackers, but then you really wouldn't understand why I chose this cheese. I was completely and utterly drawn in by the cute black sheep. He looks kinda demonic when the picture is this small, but when you bring him home, set him up in your fridge for a few days, you know, get to know each other, you'll think he's cute, too. Sheepys!

As for the flavor, well, I've never had a Camembert, at least, not intentionally. The consistency was like brie, only less dense and creamier, like softened butter. The flavor was similar to a bleu cheese, but milder. I am not sure I like eating it alone. The aftertaste was kind of funky.  I think it would be fantastic with a hot pepper jelly or a fig jam.

Amedeus. I absolutely bought this cheese because of the name. Ironically, it was very mediocre. The little description card at Whole Foods claimed that this cheese was from Austria and tasted similar to Havarti. Oooo, I thought. I like Havarti. However, it tasted more like cheese that had been soaked in dirty dish water and all the flavor had run out.

I do want to include a shout out to Atwater's for their delicious spelt bread (pictured here).  It is awesome with butter, honey, soup or plain. It easily outshone this cheese.

Irish Gubbeen. I'm starting to get excited for March and everything Irish. This cheese was a good start. It was semi-soft with a nice, friendly, nutty taste. It had a thin rind, which tasted similar to the rind on brie. Boyfriend and I devoured this little guy in one sitting... and promptly took a nap.

Not much of a contest this month. While I did like the Camembert, it reminded me too much of butter. The Irish is the big winner, and not because I am excited for St. Patrick's Day, which, of course, I am.

P.S. I made a bowl! My new bowl has little or nothing to do with this blog, other than the fact that I made it and I am proud of it. And, hey, you choose to read my blog, that makes you subject to my posting whims. Isn't it pretty? Hi, Bowl.

If you're interested in learning more about wheel-thrown pottery, check out the cool studio I go to: Hinckley Pottery.

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