13 December 2007

inaugural thursday thirteen - the fromage edition

or would formaggio sound better?

1. parmigiano-reggiano. i refuse to use any other "parmesan". i have been on a stravecchio kick lately though. that means "extra old" in italian btw, and my stravecchio was aged 36 months. makes the world's best carbonara.
2. manchego. sheep's milk cheese from spain. they typically eat it with a quince paste called membrillo, but it's a bit difficult to find, and i prefer it with apples anyway.
3. cheddar. it should not be *mild* and it should certainly not be orange. i've had killer cheddar from all over though. vermont, quebec, even a raw-milk version from australia, and i love em all.
4. teleme. y'all can have your brie. this is my absolute favorite of the runny varieties.
5. gruyere. a bowl of french onion soup wouldn't be right without it, but i like eating it out of hand as well.
6. gorgonzola. did you know there are actually two different types of gorgonzola? there's gorgonzola dolce and the mountain variety as well. i like this best of all the blue cheeses because it is usually a lot creamier than, say, stilton.
7. gouda. another i love eating out of hand, and smoked gouda is great on a chicken breast sandwich.
8. chevre. this can mean any cheese made with goat's milk, but what i'm referring to is the young, soft cheese found normally in a log shape. the combination of this type of chevre paired with beets is divine, esp. when paired with walnuts (which i am unfortunately allergic to).
9. paneer. cheese you don't have to bread to fry!
10. burrata. it's a fresh italian cheese, made from mozzarella (di bufala) and cream (also di bufala). the outer shell is mozzarella while the inside contains both mozzarella and cream, giving it a unique soft texture. if you can find it when tomatoes are at their peak, make an insalata caprese with it. you might find it hard to go back.
11. cotija. it's a dry, grainy cheese from michoacán. i'd rather have this on my frijoles refritos than that icky orange stuff one normally gets at a "mexican"restaurant. mmm @ the salty goodness.
12. mascarpone. italian super-creamy cream cheese. it's not as tangy as american cream cheese, and one of my all-time favorite desserts is built on it. april strawberries, mascarpone, and brown sugar *swoon* it got its name from "mas que bueno", spanish for "better than good".
13. feta. i prefer the sheep's milk version.

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