Switzerland's iconic Emmentaler cheese is struggling to stay on its feet, with prices in the gutter and commercially produced cheese vying for the upper hand. Julie Hunt at swissinfo has the story on proposed production quotas to curtail over-production and help the industry stay afloat:
The number of dairy farmers involved in the production of Swiss Emmentaler has declined. In 1990, there were 800 Emmental cheese producers in Switzerland. Now there are only 149 producing authentic Emmentaler AOC (Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée).
Emmentaler AOC dealers frequently order more from the cheese makers than they can sell, so the market is flooded and the prices offered by Swiss cheese handlers are often too low.
Born in Palestine, but now working in Kingsburg, California (in Fresno County), Abe Abuhilal takes great pride in his brand--Chateau Fresno Organics. The Kingsburg Recorder profiled Abuhilal, the impassioned cheese educator of local market lore.
"As an Arab we know the art of hospitality,” [Abuhilal] says. “I like to connect to the customer.”
His business, Chateau Fresno Organics, makes its cheese from 100 percent fresh raw sheep milk and include natural sea salt and French imported cheese cultures.
“Consumers want organic cheese,” Abuhilal says. “Our cheese is sold at Whole Foods market. They want our cheese. We are a small artisan cheese.”
Renee at Sweet Sugar Bean came up with a delicious and gorgeous use for your fall cache of mascarpone--a pumpkin tiramisu with candied pecans. It involves booze, coffee, cinnamon, and of course, cheese!
This year I switched up some of the ingredients and I'm really happy with the result. I brushed the lady fingers with a combo of rum and instant espresso. You could easily use just coffee or your favourite liqueur, or even a spiced apple cider if lots of kiddies will be eating it. I quite liked the espresso/rum combo myself. Grating fresh nutmeg into the mix made it super aromatic and tasting of Fall. The sprinkling of Skor bits and candied pecans was a spectacular finishing touch - and I have to say it's a wonder any of the pecans made it to the top of the cake because they are highly addictive - so watch out for ths
Carey Polis has identified 10 cheeses that even a bonafide cheese hater (if those exist!) would have trouble turning down. She's dubbed these ten the "gateway" cheeses. Get your foot in the cheese door with these, and you'll be more likely to try the next cheese that comes your way. Polis' story begins with the king of American gateway cheeses, Humboldt Fog from Cypress Grove Chevre:
Kirstin Jackson, of the beloved cheese blog It's Not You, It's Brie, has a book coming out this fall, and she's not the only one who's excited. Stay tuned for It's Not You, It's Brie: Unwrapping America's Unique Culture of Cheese, due to hit shelves November 6:
In It’s Not You, It’s Brie, cheese expert Kirstin Jackson tells the whole cheese story. Through fifty American cheese profiles, she takes us “backstage” into underground caves, into funky scents and traditions that link today’s cheese makers to American history. You’ll meet the people who dedicate their lives to artisan cheese—from those who run generations-old family farms to others who ditched their day job to start a dairy.
We've been following the recent efforts of dairy farmers in the United Kingdom to negotiate better prices from dairy processing companies. Faced with poor grass growth, high grain costs, and seeing no profit from their milk sales, many farmers feared they could not remain solvent through the winter. BBC News overviews the initial agreement between the farmers and the middle-men processors:
Dairy UK Director General Jim Begg said: "This important initiative builds upon existing arrangements, which give farmers and processors security in business relationships, whilst adding additional safeguards that will assure farmers that their contracts are not putting them at a disadvantage in the marketplace...
"Only on this basis can the industry create the added value that will protect it from price volatility."
On Washington Island, Wisconsin, a dairy barn built in 1916 had been sitting idle and decaying for about forty years--until Scott Sonoc from Chicago and his wife, Marsha Williams, purchased the property and got to work. Using local labor, the couple completely restored the Historic Island Dairy, which ran from 1916-1968. As The Green Bay Press Gazette reports, Sonoc and Williams plan to use the landmark building as an event center and educational facility:
After two years all that remains of the original two-story structure are the stone outer walls that surround the lower half of the building and the upper floor’s wood ceiling.
More so than every other day you've lived so far, today is all about cheese pizza. September 5 "National Cheese Pizza Day." So make sure to salute your local pizzeria. San Francisco Weekly brings us the story and a slideshow of great pies from across the country.
September 5 was dubbed by the Internet as "National Cheese Pizza Day," but much like Earth Day, every day in America is Cheese Pizza Day.
Cheesepalooza is a yearlong series of home cheesemaking challenges started in Alberta, Canada by a group of cheese lovers who have pledged to make a different type of cheese every month of the year. Mary Karlin's book Artisan Cheese Making at Home is the group's guide. The Edmonton Journal has the story:
Though it sounds like it could be an intimidating project, Treuer emphasizes that wannabe cheesemongers can set themselves up with sup-plies they probably already have at home, supplemented with a few items from the dollar store. Another $50 worth of food supplies will get you started.
Earlier this summer in Raleigh, NC, 150 people from all over the country took the first ever Certified Cheese Professional Exam. The long-anticipated results are finally here, and it looks like the vast majority passed with flying colors! Click through to see a list of all the cheese professionals that passed the exam:
ACS is pleased to announce the inaugural class of ACS Certified Cheese Professionals™. This elite group of 121 individuals passed the Certified Cheese Professional™ Exam administered on August 1, 2012 in Raleigh, NC. In doing so, they demonstrated a high standard of comprehensive cheese knowledge and skills across a range of subject areas.