Parmigiano-Reggiano is a hard, dry cheese made from skimmed or partially skimmed cow’s milk. It has a hard pale-golden rind and a straw-colored interior with a rich, sharp flavor. Parmigiano-Reggianos are aged at least two years. Parmesan cheese labeled stravecchio has been aged three years, while stravecchiones are four or more years old.
Their complex flavor and extremely granular texture are a result of the long aging. Parmigiano-Reggiano has been called the “King of Cheeses” and Italians don’t just slap this phrase on any old cheese. There are criteria that have to be followed.
We have always been a great fan of Deep Ellum’s cheese factory run by the esteemed Paula Lambert, the Mozzarella Company. Our love for Mozzarella Company dates back to the very early 80’s when Lambert would create a handful of balls of mozzarella selling her products at the Dallas Farmers Market out of an ice chest in Shed 2 where you may now buy tacos. I would visit with Lambert and she would regale me with stories of cheese. Pure heaven. Continue reading →
Nachos originated in the city of Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico, just over the border from Eagle Pass, Texas. In 1943, the wives of U.S. soldiers stationed at Fort Duncan in nearby Eagle Pass were in Piedras Negras on a shopping trip and arrived at the restaurant after it had already closed for the day. The maître d’hôtel, Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya, invented a new snack for them with what little he had available in the kitchen: tortillas and cheese. Anaya cut the tortillas into triangles, fried them, added shredded cheddar cheese, quickly heated them, added sliced pickled jalapeño peppers, and served them. Continue reading →
What weighs five ounces, is about an inch and half tall and is no more than five weeks old? I can only think of one thing, the MT TAM from Cowgirl Creamery. This lush heavy butter fat cheese has a soft and very edible rind, slightly oozy in the center and will make you leap like a lord. Lords do leap quite a bit, and Mt Tam may very well be the reason why.
Cowgirl Creamery’s Mt Tam is arguably the finest example of a triple cream in the United States. It has a rich and buttery flavor with a natural essence of cremini mushrooms, a certain nuttiness from the aging, topped with a delicious lemony finish that pairs ever so wonderfully with your favorite bubbles. It is a festive cheese and it clings to a festive wine. But do not fear pairing with whatever works for you.
In the past few weeks we have enjoyed the cheese with a delicious 2015 Pinot Noir from MacMurray, and more recently with a Malbec. The Malbec had an assist from particularly beautiful and plump blackberries, which were on the sour side but played well into the hands of the wine and cheese combination. The MacMurray pairs well with most anything. Continue reading →
Holiday shopping can be a mixed bag of bla and a blur, so it is especially wonderful when a beautiful shop such as Scardellomakes my life easier. Behold! The gift of cheese. Stop by and pick up a few holiday treats and sign up your friends or loved ones to one of the following classes to be held in January. If you have not attended Cheese 101 it is highly recommended as your first stop onto the journey of fine cheeses. Continue reading →
To boost sales of cheese in the 1960’s, the ploughman’s lunch was promoted throughout England as a simple meal or snack. The lunch is sometimes served in sandwich form, and with a pint of beer. The meal consists of bread, pieces of cheese and pickle. The pickle mentioned may not necessarily be the American common variety such as the dill, but instead vegetables such as carrots, cauliflower or onions.
The ploughman continues to this day as a pub favorite and you might be surprised to learn that Dallas has versions of this tasty treat that is waiting to be ordered in a few pubs and not shocking – a cheese shop. Continue reading →