They say that familiarity breeds contempt.
This is perhaps why I always forget about cheddar as a legitimate contender in my own pantheon of great cheeses.
I mean, it’s one of the first cheeses we come across in our lives. I remember cheddar cheese sandwiches on white bread as a child and learning to smother them in mustard. I also remember Saturday lunches, when after doing the shopping, Mum would fill the dining table with cold meats from the local deli, freshly slices tomatoes and of course, slices of cheddar. We would then make our own sandwiches on fluffy white rolls.
I came across this cheddar Jones the Grocer, and was more than a little interested as I hadn’t seen one made from sheep milk before.
Made by Grandma Singletons Dairy it is an aged sheep milk cheese, Parlick Fell, named after the slopes on which the sheep of Stotts Farm in Lancashire graze. The leading brand of UK sheep milk, Parlick Fell is released in March each year.
It had the typical bite of an aged cheddar with that distinctive sheep milk flavor that I so love.
In the same sitting this weekend, I also managed to finally try a truffle pecorino.
Hailing from the Italian island of Sardinia comes this raw sheep’s milk cheese with black truffles. Unlike most truffled cheeses, the truffle paste is infused after Moliterno has been aged so that the cheese develops its own character before the truffles are injected.
Though the truffles are only visible in the “veins,” the truffle flavor permeates throughout the entire paste of this amazing cheese. During the aging process, oil and vinegar are applied to the cheese’s rind to prevent weight loss (note to self – oil and vinegar to be added to weight loss regime).
Best enjoyed with a big earthy red wine, this cheese was a little confronting at the start but soon mellowed as it breathed. A bit like me.