In Praise of Cheese

CheeseFetaHuntsmanProvoHorizbfLOLast night’s dinner was not something to blog about – Gorditas with ground beef, sautéed peppers and onions, refried black beans, diced tomato and hot peppers, etc. – and tonight’s dinner is pretty basic – smoked mozzarella ravioli from Tenuta’s served with a jarred vodka sauce from Cost Plus and a tossed salad – so I thought I’d rifle through our cheese bin and list some of our favorites.

Left to right; we have a baby swiss that I like in quiche and lasagna (if I don’t make it A La Française, I make my mom’s version using cottage and Swiss cheeses in place of the more usual Italians). Next up; my current fave for salads, Feta, followed by Huntsman, one of my all-time favorite cheeses – a layer cake kind of combination of Double Gloucester and Stilton – I think this cheese works as well before dinner with cucumber slices and crackers as it does after with pears and Port (you could go the apple route, but trust me, try it with some good red pears). Bringing up the right, a fresh wedge of one of the many Provolones available at Tenuta’s – I choose the one I want by sniffing them all and this time came home with a sample of sharp Wisconsin cheesery.

CheeseTenutasRomanobfLOLeft out of the image, because there is just so little of it left, is some Drunken Goat – a semi-firm Spanish goat cheese let to sit in a vat of red wine for a couple or three days until the rind is a the color of a rich Cabernet (or, more accurately I suppose, a Doble Pasta). Finally, a bit of Pecorino Romano for grating over our ravioli and vodka sauce tonight. We normally have a couple of  different Cheddars and the odd block of Velveeta (don’t sneer – you know you love it for melting too – I  happen to think it works best with my Honey French bread when I’m in the mood for grilled cheese, and Rich loves it for his queso dip) as well, but haven’t gotten around to restocking yet.

Tomorrow, we’re meeting friends at the Seven Mile Fair – Wisconsin’s largest flea market – and then dinner at their place, so who knows what kind of cool stuff I’ll find?

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