March 25, 2005
Camembert Cheese
Posted by Gordon Smith

Brennan's is selling cheeses from the United States Championship Cheese Contest, held last week in Milwaukee. (See here for the list of winners.) Tonight, I devoured a round of Camembert from Old Europe Cheese, Inc. in Benton Harbor, Michigan. That's right. Michigan. Not a state known for great cheeses, but this cheese was excellent, earning a third prize in the contest.

Camembert is as recognizable as any French cheese, with the familiar white rind and yellow paste. Named for village of Camembert, this cheese is made from fresh cow's milk, which is curdled and ladled into circular molds. Salt is added on the second day of production, thus accounting for usual salty taste. After being covered with bacteria, the cheese is ripened for at least three weeks. When brought to room temperature, the cheese should ooze slightly, unless is has been aged four or five weeks, in which case it will ooze a lot!

People do all sorts of fancy things with Camembert, but I prefer to keep it simple, with bread or crackers.

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