Category Archives: Ewes cheese

Manouri

History of Manouri

Manouri is a Greek a fresh whey cheese made from pasturised goat or sheeps milk. Generally made as a by-product of feta production from Thessalia and Macedonia in central and northern Greece

Making of … & Tasting notes

The cheese is made with the addition of milk and/or cream to the whey. Manouri is a creamy and mild cheese with a texture reminiscent of a cheesecake. It has a milky, slightly acidic flavour.

Also known as Manoypi it is used in pastries such as spanakopita or drizzled with honey.
This creamy cheese with no casing is also served for breakfast as a low-fat alternative to Greek yogurt.
Manouri has a light aroma, is slightly sour, similar to that of fresh yogurt, it has a clean, subtle nutty flavour and the barest hint of tang.

Manouri is a cheese that can also be used for grilling, much better for you than Haloumi and lower in salt too.

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Petite Odre

History of Petite Odre

From the village of Vilasar del Dalt, Spain
In the 20th Century, the village split into 2 and became Vilassar in the hills de Dalt (in the hills), and Vilassar de Mar (by the sea)

Naturally this little Sheep’s milk cheese is from the hills.petit odre

Maturing & Tasting notes

Petite Odre is a Sheep’s milk white mould style cheese from Vilasar del Dalt, near Barcelona.
The name however is a little curious as Odre is the Spanish word for a bota bag, a ham shaped animal skin bag used to transport wine and, in earlier times, cheese. As to why it has this name is a mystery to me!

Made with pasturised Sheep’s milk and matured for a month before being released to the public.

The interior is creamy at the edges and becomes a little firmer in the centre.
Unfortunately this cheese has been labelled as a Sheep’s milk Brie which is such a shame as not only does it look nothing like a Brie it has its own right to be who it is.

The interior is pure white under the white mould exterior with a smooth texture and a slight mushroomy hazelnut sweetness that lingers on the palate.

Prom Country Cheese

Sheep sensation

History of Prom country cheese

Trevor and Jan Brandon of Red Hill Dairy established in April 2000.
First inspired by farmhouse cheesemaking in Europe they drew upon Trevor’s experience as a food microbiologist to give us distinctive, handcrafted regional cheeses from the Mornington Peninsula terroir.

In September 2014 Burke their son and Bronwyn his wife opened a new ‘Cheese Experience Centre’ Prom Country Cheese. It boasts a large production area adjoining a cellar door tasting room and cafe, and overlooks the pastures and rolling hills of the beautiful Moyarra valley.

Maturing

Burke & Bronwyn run their own flock of dairy sheep in South Gippsland.
They have been farming sheep for over 20 years, which made the transition into sheep dairying a natural progression. The sheep run on fertile pastures in the rolling hills south of Korumburra.

burke walking sheep
A small round at 8cm in diameter with a weight of 170g

The Moyarra ewes share their milk as the lambs suckle overnight and what is left is used for cheesemaking.
Making this a real collaboration where the lambs nor mothers suffer the loss of their milk and/or connection.
Where the animals are at the fore and the cheese production is a by-product. Living up to the old saying that if your animals are happy the cheese will only be the better for it.

Sheep Sensation can be enjoyed at any stage, from fresh at 3-5 days, creamy at 14 days, to semi-matured at 3-4 weeks and aged at 2-3 months, when it develops a waxy-smooth, drier texture with concentrated flavours and a peppery finish.

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Tasting notes

A farmhouse style cheese where the flavour is distinctively different with a balance between sweet and sour, and long finish on the palate. Melts in the mouth. The aroma is of the farm, reminiscent of freshly-cut grass.

Match with a crisp Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc or a bright Pale Ale when young or with a dessert wine as the cheese ages.

These cheeses use vegetarian rennet, and are free from genetically modified organisms, artificial stabilisers and preservatives.

Check them out here . . . http://www.redhillcheese.com.au/main.html

Brebirousse d’Argental

History of Brebirousse

Brebirousse literally translates as Red sheep, and when you unwrap this little beauty you’ll understand why. A washed rind cheese with a glowing orange rind due to the annatto wash.

Maturing & Tasting notes

Don’t be put off by its washed rind exterior, this cheeses resembles more of a white mould, with its creamy interior and just a little more punch this cheese is ripened for less than a month.

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This little cheese will stay with you long after it’s been devoured.
With a soft texture like silk, the taste has many facets with a briny saltiness, a slight nuttiness and yet sweet milkiness.

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Chebris

Pron. Sh-bree

History of Chebris

Produced by Onetik one of the largest producers of this cheese as well as the most loved Ossau Iraty.
This cheese hails from the Basque area of France between the French and Spanish border.
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A mixed milk cheese with a combination of sheep and goats milk. A tomme of a cheese weighing in at approximately 4kg,
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Tasting notes

With a wonderful combination of both milks, this cheese has a fudgey texture classic of a semi hard alpine cheese with a creamy nuttiness, yet a cleansing acidity coming from the goats milk.
Definitely one of the top mixed milk cheeses.

Lamb chopper

History of Lamb chopper

A relative to the Midnight Moon, lamb chopper is a sheep’s milk cheese made by the Dutch exclusively for Cypress Grove.
A new comer in the cheese world only having been around since the 1980s.

Maturing & tasting notes

Aged only 3-6 months this is a Gouda style cheese, made using pasteurised milk and vegetarian rennet. In a classic tomme shape and weighing in at approximately 4kg per wheel.
Soft and buttery on the palate, this cheese has incredible sweetness redolent of salted caramel and fresh vanilla beans. With a slight hint of citrus to contrast the savoury qualities of sheep’s milk making this cheese a very well balanced cheese.

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Lavort

A raw sheep’s milk cheese, from France.

History of Lavort

Lavort or Brebis du Lavort as it is also known was re-invented by Patrick Beaumont and chef friend Pierre Troisgrois in the Auvergne region of France.
It is said that a peasant named Guillaume dedicated this cheese to his guru Baron Lavort, where he learnt the knowhow and secrets for making ewe’s milk cheese. Lavort was killed during the Spanish crusades yet his pupil wanted his name to live on, so this cheese was born.

Maturing

The producer specialises in raw sheeps milk cheese,, specifically from the Lacaune breed native to the central massif region, a very common breed used for making cheese, which also produces Frances most loved Roquefort.

Lavort cheese is a tall cyclidrical cheese with a sinkhole in the top, with a musty dusty rind and speckled moulds usually for Tomme de Savoie cheeses.

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Matured in old humid water towers converted into cellars and matured on fir boards for 3-6 months. The younger cheeses at 2-3 months are called ‘Guillaume de Lavort’ whilst the older cheeses are simply called ‘Lavort”
The cheese has a distinct cave like aroma, with a sweet fresh hay, a dustiness, smokiness of bacon and a yellow hue you’d usually expect from a spring time Beaufort d’Alpage.

Tasting notes

The appearance gives nothing to this cheese, with its refreshing delicate open textured interior.
The cheese is complex with notes of fresh hay, a softness on the palate yet a springyness. With a gentle smokiness, and nuttiness hiding behind the somewhat musty earthy exterior.
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Fumaison

Pron. Foo-may-zon

Fumaison, a raw sheep’s milk cheese from the central region of Auvergne, in France.
A rare cheese for us in Australia due to the limited aging and being a raw milk cheese, it was a pleasure to have this cheese come through customs and I for one hope it is the beginning of many more younger raw milk cheeses to arrive in the country.

History of Fumaison

Created in 1990 by cheesemaker Patrick Beaumont. A relative new comer on the cheese scene, Fumaison is play on the word Fume (meaning smoked in French) and maison meaning a ‘house smoked’ cheese.
The milk is from the Lacaune sheep, which is the most common dairy milk breed in the country.

Patrick uses the same technique as he does for making un joli Jesus de Lyon, a local sausage from Auvergne. It is aged by hanging it from the roof of a cave for 100 days, the same way a ham would be.

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Maturing

The production of Fumaison is quite typical in the cheese making fashion, then the curd is placed in moulds. It is then pressed for 24 hours to remove the remaining moisture. Then Fumaison is brined for a full day before beginning its particular aging process where it’s taken to the local caves where it is then smoked creating a cheese like no other.
Externally the cheese appears to have a dusty mouldy rind, underneath is a paste that smells a little musty of mushrooms with a lingering smokiness. It has many evenly spaced ridges, as if it were bound with butcher’s twine, further perpetuating the faux sausage trickery.

Tasting notes

Fumaison has a complex flavour profile. Beginning with a gentle smokiness which is not overpowering and a sweet savoury nuttiness on a firm textured cheese.

Queso Oveja al Romero

A Sheep’s milk cheese similiar to the classic Manchego.

ovejo al romano

History of Queso Oveja al Romero

An artisan sheep’s milk cheese made in the style of Manchego. However this little beauty is rubbed with Rosemary
Produced in the same area as Manchego, this cheese has been around for as long as Manchego and the families adhere to their tradition of rubbing the cheese with Iberic lard and Rosemary as the cheese matures, and when flavours have been absorded by the cheese it is brushed off and more herbs are rubbed into the cheese.

Tasting notes

Even though this cheese is reminiscent of another cheese the flavours and maturing process is quite different, softening the interior of the cheese and yet intensifying with Rosemary flavours.
Neither creamy nor firm but more like a dense fudge as it softens on the palate and the lingering Rosemary notes on the back of the palate are quite refreshing.

Pecorino family

Pron. Pec-or-re-no

Pecorino is a hard Sheep’s milk Italian cheese often with a saltiness in there too. Used mainly for grating and placing over hot dishes or into salads. Pecora is the Italian word for Sheep and therefore pecorino for Sheep’s milk cheese.

Pecorino di Fossa

The technique of making formaggio di fossa dates back to the 15th Century.
This Fossa cheese is made with either sheep’s or cow’s milk, sometimes a mixture of both.
Fossa is the name given to a pit dug into the ground and lined with straw which has been burnt, this reduces the amount of moisture from the pit and to sterilise the space.
This particular cheese is matured for 30 days before being placed inside muslin bags and then into the Fossa and left to mature for another 80-100 days.
The pit is then sealed to limit air into the cave enabling the process of anaerobic fermentation to begin.
When the cheese is removed from the Fossa it is allowed to ripen for a further 3 months.
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Pecorino Romano

Pecorino was the food which kept the march armies on their feet in ancient Roman times, and to this day it is still a well loved cheese in Italy and around the world, making a nice alternative to Parmesan cheese.
Today it is still produced to the original recipe and is one of Italy’s oldest cheeses. However most of its production now takes place in Sardinia.
To this day many families eat Pecorino with fresh broad beans on the 1st May, during a daily excursion to the Roman Campagna, a low lying area around Rome.

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Pecorino Sardo

Its flavour is different from that of Pecorino Romano, which is also made on the island of Sardinia. Sardo is richer while Romano is much more biting and salty. Pecorino Sardo is perfect for dishes requiring a lighter flavour where as the Romano has more bold, pronounced flavours.
Pecorino Sardo, not to be confused with Sardo a hard cheese made in Argentina!
The Pecorino Sardo curds are set in moulds that will give its characteristic shape, then bathed in a brine solution and lightly smoked then left to ripen.
The rind and pate vary depending on smokiness, and length of maturation. The flavour also intensifies with longer maturation.

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Pecorino Siciliano

Pecorino Siciliano has a traditional cylindrical shape, and weighing in between 4-12kg.
This cheese is made from raw Sheep’s milk but with lamb’s rennet to coagulate the milk.
The rind is ivory white with a distinctive rind due to the basket moulding.
The cheese is matured for 4 months exhibiting tiny little holes, the cheese has a slight spicy taste and intense aroma due to the diet of the grazing sheep.

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Pecorino Toscano

This cheese can be eaten at many stages of its life, from 20 days of maturation up to 4 months.
Coming in the shape of a large disc at approx. 20cm across & 10cm high. The weight vaies according to age but between 100g-3.5kg
The exterior can vary depending on the washing with either tomato, ash, Olive oil or a combination of the three.
The younger of the cheeses can be used to compliment salads and as the cheese ages it can be used for stronger tasting dishes or even jam and especially figs.

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