As a run-up to Mmm...Canada,this week's posts will feature Canadian foods and food products. Today's post features Canadian Cheeses.
For those of you who aren't fully aware...I am part mouse. Yes, I know, I know...I don't look as if I should be a Mousketeer, nor do my dental features particularly resemble a certain Mr. Peter Pettigrew. But I do have a cerain affitinty for cheese.
Okay...When My Darling Michael and I saw Ratatouille he giggled away ...because (apparently) I get the same look on my face as Rémy did when we found a wonderful flavour combination.
Nothing wrong with that.
Anway...cheese. As I've mentioned a couple of times this month, Canada has a proud cheese-making history, and our cheeses are becoming better known. To celebrate and support cheese manufacturers, The Dairy Farmers of Canada hold The Canadian Cheese Grand Prix every other year--we have more than 200 cheese manufacturers who make more than 200 types of cheese. You can find more information about the Grand Prix, along with past winners here
I think my love of cheese is genetic. My mum is known as the little mousie at home because well...it's amazing how quickly a large hunkahunka cheesey goodness can disappear if she's in range. As for me, I listed cheese on my you are what you eat meme response and I try to have several types on the go in my fridge.
I'm lucky in that the swankyfooderie has a pretty decent cheese case. I can go in at any time and explore a new fromaggie treat from many places in Europe or North America. When I realised I'd be doing a post a day featuring Canadian food and food products, I headed over and bought a trio of Canadian cheeses:
Made in Québec, this is a semi-soft, surface ripened washed-rind, cow's milk cheese with a pale, creamy texture. I'll admit that I could instantly tell when the cheese was unwapped...it is a bit whiffy. But the taste was simply lovely--mild and creamy it melts well but slices well, so it could easily find a home on a cheese tray or on a sandwich.
Apologies: I tried looking up some information on this one, but I can't seem to find anything...which makes me wonder if it's from a very small manufacturer or if it's just misnamed. Oh well. This is a mild and very soft, almost melty goat's milk cheese. The cheese itself is snowy white and the thin rind is covered in ash. I could easily see myself using it in a mango or strawberry salad.
Madagascar Green Peppercorn Cheese
There were two things that made me buy this one...first was the green peppercorns. I love the juniper-like taste they have. Second...it was from Manitoba. Don't get me wrong, but I normally see Ontario and Québec cheeses in the cold case so when I saw something from Manitoba, I had to add it to my cart. It was my favourite of the three. The cheese is about as firm as a mozzerella and very mild, letting the peppercorn taste come through. Great for a swanky pizza, melted over chicken, or in a sandwich.
Actually...I prefer cheese on crackers...or with more cheese.
If you are interested in learning more about Canadian cheese, the dairy people have started a podcast series on cheese. But first go through the landing page...the current campaign is a "duets" concept...it's a scream...but I like cheesey things like that.
Edit: Well...I just found out that the 2008 Grand Prix has been postponed by a year...