io9 has a lovely article about the rennet that is used to coagulate milk during the creation of most cheeses. I knew that traditional rennet comes from calf stomachs, but I had no idea that vegetable rennet comes from GMO E. coli that was developed in the 80’s. I learned quite a bit from this one!
Yes, I’m a lazy little man, not putting up any pictures again. And terse descriptions, too? I know that y’all are going to be writing me off soon.
On to the cheese!
Today we had Ski Queen Gjetost again. I brought it in last June and made a lot of friends with it so I decided that it was a good time to re-introduce it to my coworkers. Gjetost is made from the whey instead of the curds, and boiled to caramelize the lactose giving it a sweet flavor and a brownish color. It is delightful!
I also brought in Kerrygold Skellig for St. Patrick’s Day. Well, I didn’t really need an excuse to bring in something from Kerrygold, but there you have it. Their Skellig cheese is a slightly sweet Cheddar that just sings to your taste buds. Even with the popularity of the Gjetost, Skellig ended up getting the most compliments by far. Props to Pastor Barb for finding this one on a cruise and bringing back the recommendation!
Lastly I brought in Tillamook Sharp Cheddar out of Wisconsin. As far as cheddars go, this one is fairly good. No surprises, just good, solid cheddar with a bit of sharpness to it.
Ahoy, mateys! Yet another SCT has popped up, and while it is certainly not winning any awards, it is still quite yummy.
Going left to right, we have Serra Cheese’s Provolino. I’ve been trying to find a link to them that doesn’t have to do with their cheese recall from last year, or the two failed health inspections from last year, but it is proving quite difficult. I’m figuring that since the cheese is back in stores that they are either doing much better now, or they have at least greased the proper palms and the regulators are looking the other way. Either way, this is a mighty fine cheese! Provolino is either a slightly aged mozzarella or an immature provolone, depending on how one looks at it. As such it is like a dry mozz, or a provolone without the bite. Quite an interesting taste and texture. Hopefully we don’t get Lysteria.
Next up is Great Midwest’s Habanero Jack. We’ve had this one a couple of times before, and it is exquisite. The jack flavor is strong, and the habanero peppers don’t overpower it. It is still fairly spicy, but not enough to completely scare off those that are more sensitive to the heat. It also has a fairly soft texture that really wants me to try melting it on a sandwich if I can ever keep any around long enough to try.
Lastly is Red Apple Cheese’s Applewood Smoked Cheddar. This one, while it got fairly high praise from everyone else today, I found to be a bit disappointing. The smoke really overpowered everything else, which is really odd for Red Apple Cheese. They typically do an excellent job of balancing the smoke and the cheese, but this one was just a little acrid. It wasn’t so far off balance that it fell over, but enough that it limped over my taste buds.
Until next week, stay cheesy!
Due to unforeseen circumstances there will not be any Stinky Cheese Tuesday this week.
Picture was one of the first when doing a GIS for "sick cheese"