It took a while to get this reblochon. Earlier today, I didn't even know what it was, but before that, I dragged Liam with me to the Bowl and then out to the Cheese Board only to find that the Bowl was a crazy Sunday-ness (Liam accidentally elbowed a child in the eye in the check-out), and the Cheese Board isn't open, and La Farine doesn't have a single baguette until 1:30, and so there I am at the Cheese Shop in Rockridge with my list of cheeses straight outta the Cheese Primer, suspect enough that the guy asks, 'where did you get the idea for these cheeses?' Next thing I know, he's offering me a Sainte Maure instead of a Saint-Marcellin, and I know this is wrong because I'm supposed to bring cow's milk. Not goat.
The idea of a cheese club came about after I decided I needed to know more about cheese as my culinary goal for 2007. Jasmine and I talked about it, then Sara said she wanted to embark on a thematic project with cheese: read, experience, create. Out of this, 'cheese club' was born. (How lucky am I to have these friends?For the record, I do have a cookbook club, a book club, knitting gatherings, and used to have a craft club)So here we are today with the first meeting of The Dairy Queens, armed with cheese in one hand and Steven Jenkins The Cheese Primer in the other. We each chose one of his favorite cheeses, or one that inspired us. New Englander that I am, I went for a Somerset Cheddar. French as I try to be (not in a Franco-phile way, more like Liam is half-French and wants to move there some day so I'm trying), I got the Reblochon. My cheeses were the most boring.
Despite my aversion to the phrase 'bloomy rind,' Sara brought an amazing French goat with that part between rind and inside that we all adored. She also couldn't resist a gouda goat that was so soft and slightly piquant and creamy, that we all adored it (trying to learn from Jenkins' words AND use my own here!). Jasmine took the cake, in my cheese book, with the Sardinian pecorino with truffles. Earthy and mushroom-y and even beefy. We took chunks of La Farine's sweet batard (same incredible dough as their 5-star Rustic Baguette), and slathered with each. The cheeses were incredible enough to shadow the Medjool dates and Marcona almonds on the side.
I used to be lactose intolerant. It was a long, slow road of admission after denial, conquering the problem, and eventually, dismissing it with 8 weeks of Dr. Andrew Weil's Optimum Health (I swear). Today, as I ate each of these pieces of fromage while flipping through Jenkins' opinions on everything from Brie (not worth buying) to rind (to eat or not, you can pretty much decide yourself), I thought, "we are dorky and delicious - the Dairy Queens."