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Cheese of the month: Coeur de Neufchatel AOP

Steve and Caroline Ward bring you choice fromages…

Love is in the air once again here at cheese towers. I mean, why would you buy your betrothed flowers when they could have Cheese?

In the greens hills of Normandy sits the small town of Neufchatel-en-Bray. Famous for making one of the oldest cheeses in France. This soft, mold ripened, heart shaped unpasteurised cows milk delight is similar in texture to that of Camembert and its origins date back to the 6th century.

It is said that the mademoiselles of Neufchatel developed the heart-shaped moulds to send a reminder of love and home to their men during the war. Since then, almost all of these cheeses are made in the shape of a heart (Coeur)**

Beneath the edible bloomy rind, the paste is slightly grainy, lighter and more salty and ‘tangy’ than the rich Camembert. It makes an excellent centrepiece to a cheese board and is particularly delicious served with any kind of figgy accompaniment. They can also be baked in the same way as Camembert.

Come st Valentines day, no doubt Mrs Cheese will dig out the best of Barry White and request that we crack open that bottle of 20-year-old Calvados that we were saving. Well, it would be rude not to as they go together so well.

** other heart shaped cheeses are also available.

www.stgilescheese.com

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