I FOUND THE CINDERELLA CHEESE! Let me back up, those of you who read the Midnight Moon cheese of the week post two weeks ago, know that for Thanksgiving, I bought three cheeses, knowing that I would write the Cheese of the Week on the best one. Well, in my haste to put together Thanksgiving dinner, I threw away the labels for the cheeses and could not remember the name of my favorite. Thus, it was named the Cinderella cheese, the beautifully flavored, mysterious cheese that got away.
Well yesterday, I went back to Whole Foods, armed with the only glass slipper I had: The cheese began with a “C” and was somewhat similar to a Gruyere. After trying a Swiss cheese that I did not care for, French one that resembled a cheddar, and an Irish piece, that reminded me way too much of Parmesan, I had almost lost hope. Then, as I was walking away, there on the restock cart was a small piece of Challerhocker, which I recognized at first glance.
When I first tasted Challerhocker, I was hooked immediately, the flavor was so complex! Similar to the Vlaskaas Gouda, it starts out more like a traditional Swiss cheese, but the flavor is much stronger. Then it slowly warms up in your mouth and this nutty, and then sharp tart flavor comes through.
Challerhocker, a Swiss cheese that uses cows milk, literally means “sitting the cellar” and develops much of flavor during the 10 or more months where it is doing just that.
I personally, enjoyed this cheese with rosemary crackers and last night, with Acme olive bread. The olives cut through the richness of the cheese beautifully. I would say that while it is too pricey to add to our cheese sauce, it would make a lovely addition, but really it’s so rich and complex, I would recommend it as a tasting cheese. In fact, this would be a perfect appetizer cheese before a holiday meal.
Maddie claimed in yesterday’s post that Gruyére is the cheese she would eat for the rest of her life, if she could only eat one. I can’t wait to feed her a piece of Challerhocker, and see if she changes her mind.