How to choose, to display, to conserve and to enjoy cheese ...
Here are some pieces of advice, by Raymond Felix, a cheesemonger at Androuet's
- "Don't lay in amounts of cheese, for it could lose its properties.
- The tastes of cheese depend on seasons mainly.
- A cheesemonger will offer you this or that sort because it is splendid : trust him !
- Vary your cheeseboard when making it up, so as to please everybody.
- Do never take rinds away before serving the board : it could offend connoisseurs ...
- Cheese should be served with various sorts of bread : a slice of roasted bread will enhance the flavour of livarot or a "Selles-sur-Cher". But a "Neufchâlet" or a "Chaource" will blend well with fancy bread (flavoured with raisin, nuts or hazel nut). Put butter on the table also.
- Circular and soft cheese shall be cut up like cakes. Cut squarred sorts up like cakes or in thin slices, starting by the center. Cut up tall cheese in small rounds, and small goat's-milk cheese in two parts. Segment pyramidal sorts starting from the center and bevel portions with knife, in order to avoid crumbing them.
Most of the times, cheese blends well with wines from the same region of origin.
- For cooked cheese, choose white wines, or full bodies red wines (such as Arbois, Saint Emilion).
- For blue cheese, choose light red wines (Morgon).
- For soft cheese, or blooming pastes, red tonic wines (Pomerol, Médoc, chinon) will do.
- For washed cheese, full bodies red wines (Morgon, Chateauneuf-du-Pape).
- For cream cheese, white wines and sweet rosés.
- For goat's-milk cheese : dry and fruity and light wines.
At home, every kind of cheese can be kept in the refrigerator. But beware of cold ! You had better keep it in the vegetable tray, wrapped in aluminium,or enclosed in a plastic box. : cheese will remain fresh and will not permeate food with its smell.
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