Last week, Ihsan shared with us a few memories from one of his early cheese sourcing trips – a 1993 trip to the Castelmagno region of Italy. In that post, he described one of his revelatory food experiences: Gnocchi al Castelmagno. Since that trip, he has been working on recreating the dish at home. Here is the current permutation of that recipe, one he says gets pretty close to that amazing, first taste! (more…)
Posts Tagged ‘Cheese’
One of the most memorable trips my wife, Valerie, and I have taken in pursuit of new cheeses was in 1993. We traveled to Castelmagno, home to the famous Italian cheese of the same name. Located on the very northwest fringes of Italy, Castelmagno is a small commune or municipality, consisting of several hamlets. We were invited to visit the region by our friend and mentor, Matteo Ascheri. The hamlet we visited had only one albergo (inn) and a total population of 56. Eleven of those inhabitants made Castelmagno.
Matteo, a Piedmontese food and wine authority, is a winemaker and knew everyone in town. On our first day, he organized a lunch for us with several local food producers, including a fellow who crafted hard candies and exotic elixirs. We all ended up having the most amazing lunch in the local albergo’s lunch room. For our first course, we were served lake trout cured in vinegar with mountain bread. The bread was made with flour from our friends at Mulino Marino and ice cold water from a nearby brook. In that one course, we enjoyed flavors and textures we had never experienced before – and it wasn’t even the highlight of the meal.
The trout and bread was followed by the dish of my dreams: Gnocchi al Castelmagno. (more…)
Here are some posts and articles related to food and drink worth a read from various sources on the web:
- The Truth on Olive Oil Health - a post from Tom Mueller about Dr. Mary Flynn and her work to “…start separating the wheat from the chaff in olive oil health, by building a canon of solid scientific information, and debugging a number of widespread olive oil misconceptions.”
- How to Eat a Porcupine - not only one of the best post titles but a beautifully written travelogue about the emotional progression of eating bushmeat in a foreign land. (more…)
Posted in Cheese, Cheesemaking, Food Science, tagged cardoon thistle, Cheese, chymosin, coagulation, curds, fermentation-produced chymosin, food, microbial rennet, pepsin, rennet, vegetable rennet, vegetarian rennet, whey on February 4, 2013 | 1 Comment »
If, as Clifton Fadiman once said, “cheese is milk’s leap toward immortality”, then rennet could be considered the springboard of cheesemaking. Stripped down to its most basic processes, the first steps of cheesemaking involve taking warm milk, adding a starter culture (to convert the lactose in the milk to lactic acid) and adding rennet. The lactic acid begins coagulating the milk in a slow process that yields a delicate curd and some cheeses are still made using this method as the sole form of coagulation. Most cheeses, however, also employ rennet to separate the curds from the whey, speeding up the process and leading to a firmer, more elastic curd. (more…)
Some of our customers may have noticed a new fresh goat milk cheese in our cases. Carolyn Hillman, our go-to fresh chèvre producer for many years, is taking a hiatus from production for the next year or so. While heartbroken about this absence, I am thrilled to be able to support another grande dame of Massachusetts cheesemaking – Susan Sellew of Rawson Brook Farm. Susan is entering her 30th year of production! (more…)
Posted in About Us, Christmas, Gift Giving, Gifts & Wares, Hanukkah, Holiday, Staff Profiles, tagged Arraya, Cheese, chicken liver mousse, Christmas, Fieschi, food, Goat Tomme, jam, Jean-Marie Cornille, Mostarda di Cremona, olive oil, Pâté Forestier, Pio Tosini prosciutto, Rush Creek Reserve, Stilton, Twig Farm on December 4, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
Many of you may know Tripp as the jolly presence behind our BBQ grill this past summer. Others may be familiar with his stellar work on the cheese counter and in developing our domestic cheese program.
Tripp grew up in apple country – namely, Harvard, MA. He crossed the country to attend the University of Montana and, returning to New England after college, Tripp’s passion for food (particularly cheese) and his curiosity to learn more about food production brought him to Formaggio Kitchen Cambridge. (more…)
Posted in Cheese, Local, Pairings, Thanksgiving, tagged 3-Corner Field Farm, Andy Kehler, Blue Ledge Farm, Brebis Blanche, Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, Cheese, David Major, Emily Sunderman, food, Gregory Bernhardt, Hannah Sessions, Jasper Hill Farm, Karen Weinberg, Mateo Kehler, Michael Lee, Middlebury Blue, Northstone, Paul Borghard, Thanksgiving, Twig Farm, Twig Square, Verano, Vermont Shepherd, Yesenia Major on November 4, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
We love Thanksgiving. It may mean a variety of things to a variety of people but there are many common threads – turkey, family, friends, cranberries, football, a full stomach and, in many cases, an afternoon nap or walk. This year, we checked in with our domestic cheese buyer, Tripp, who has put together a wonderful Thanksgiving cheese board, incorporating a cross-section of milk types and textures. He draws on some old favorites but also includes a couple of newer cheeses that we think are destined to become classics in their own right! (more…)
Posted in Cheese, Portugal, tagged Amarelo da Beira Baixa DOP, Azeitão, Bica, Cabra da Beira Baixa, Cabra Raiano, Casa de Mendevil Velho, Castelinhos, Castelo Branco DOP, Cheese, food, Pastagens do Convento, Portugal, Portuguese cheeses, Sabores d'Avózinha, Serpa DOP, Serra da Estrela, Terrincho Velho DOP on October 11, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
As a lover of all things Portuguese for many years, I have been working to build the selection of Portuguese cheeses here at our Cambridge location. In the past, we’ve had a few varieties at a time, but this is the first time we’ve had as large a selection as this, and I’m very excited about them all. Here’s the lowdown on the line-up! (more…)