Fromage Friday: Comté

I bought another cheese book, Eyewitness Companions’ French Cheeses. It’s in English, lists all the specifics for how every cheese is made, and even the best times of year to buy it. I’ve even been threatening to teach my French friends about cheese by using it. Is it time to admit that I have a serious problem yet?

This week I stayed in the realm of common, familiar cheeses and bought a comté. While my new book was full of information about how this cheese is made, the most interesting part was the instructions for how to cut a comté. Most French cheeses should be cut in a certain way according to their shape, but this is just plain ridiculous. I’m sorry for every person I’ve ever offended by just chopping comté haphazardly and nomming.

Comté, cow cheese.
Made by: Illegible.
Hails from: Jura mountain area roughly near Lyon, which includes the Rhone-Alps area. Mideastern France, just next to Switzerland. It is also sometimes made in Lorraine, chez moi.
Background: This is one of the most popular cheeses in all of France. It is everywhere in the supermarkets, and fairly cheap. It’s a semi-firm cheese, and tastes strong and warm and nutty, but isn’t sharp at all. Similar to the feel of gruyère. It is filling without the heavy cheese-residue feeling I get from a lot of other French cheeses.
Can I eat the rind? Not this one.
Serve it: Cheese plate before dinner, or in sandwiches or for fondue. I could make a mean grilled cheese with this, now that I’m thinking about it. Even packed with lunch with an apple and a salad, it would be delicious.

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