Will Knit for Cheese

About a year ago, I made an arrangement with my co-worker Kasseri. She wanted me to knit her a hat. I really don’t like to be paid to knit, so we negotiated a trade. I made the hat, Kasseri wore it lots, and promised me that she would eventually deliver her end of the bargain. I put absolutely no pressure on her and the days marched on.

Much to my benefit, not too long ago Kasseri took in a new roommate who just happens to work for Murray’s! Feeling guilty, ridiculously so I’d like to point out, Kasseri told me that she had finally harassed her flatmate into bringing home some cheeses in exchange for the trade.

ctmy89-katie:kelly cheeseAnd just look at these beauts! Let’s start in the upper left, that’s Tomme Crayeuse, the latter word meaning chalky, but this fromage, thankfully reminded me more of a field of mushrooms than a dusty classroom. Across from it, is the Ewephoria Sheep Milk Gouda, with a very punny name. The flavor here was almost sweet, but in a good way. Below the gouda is a crumbly hunk of Clothbound Cheddar from Cabot Creamery. (I think Kasseri said this was her favorite; she told me that her roomie insisted she sample them before passing them along to me :-))

Anyway, this is no run-of-the-mill cheddar, but one that has real bite. And finally, there’s my new favorite, and perhaps Perlagrigia’s too–she was participating in the cheese feasting with me–Malghese! Falling texture-wise somewhere between a soft Brie and a not fresh mozzarella, this washed rind formaggio is likely most reminiscent in flavor of a Taleggio. In fact, I later read of it being described as “Taleggio’s better behaved little brother”. For some reason, it’s not listed on the Murray’s site, but you can definitely get it there if you can go to one in person. I recently went by the counter and bought another giant hunk to take home with me. Delish!ctmy90-murray's smorgasbordMy thanks to Kasseri & her Murray’s employed champion of a roommate for making my day, and especially for turning me on to Mr. Malghese. Mmm! Yes, I will happily “knit for cheese” any day of the week.

For the Love of Flamenco

Prior to her NYC visit, Jarlsberg read about and was intrigued by a paella & tapas bar in NoLita that featured flamenco music on Tuesday nights. Stilton was also eager to experience this perfect pairing, so they met there this evening after she finished work and Jarls had enjoyed a day of sight-seeing in the city.

We had not pre-booked and got stuck at a table near the window, but with not the greatest view of the band and dancers. We ordered some tapas, since the paella were huge, and Stil didn’t want to force Jarls to go veggie. Admittedly, one of Stilton’s vegetarian defaults is the cheese plate, and Jarlsberg was totally happy to share that option.

Unfortunately, the cheeses were just sort of . . . eh. While the blue one at the back had a sharper flavor, even it wasn’t that tasty. The other two were on the more bland side. This was disappointing as the tabla de quesos that Stilton has had at Nai Tapas is much better, in fact she even wrote about it before. Of course, we still ate most of what was in front of us, but we won’t be returning to this place anytime soon for the food or cheese alone . . .ctmy88-soccarat quesosThankfully, the music more than made up for the mediocre food. Eventually, the chattery crowds cleared out, and we were able to move in and enjoy the performance up close. The dancers were so passionate as they stomped out the beats to the staccato rhythm of the music. Stil declared that the lead singer, who sounded much older than he looked, resembled Hugh Jackman a bit, which is never a bad thing. 😉ny2060-flamenco dancerStilton regrets not thinking to get the name of the band because she’d like to see them again, though perhaps in a venue that has quesos mucho mejores! Jarlsberg will have to do some research and find out if there’s an obscure Spanish sect that has resettled in Oslo, so she can continue to get her flamenco groove on there. Hey, there’s a hybrid Scottish-Spanish group, Salsa Celtica, that Stilton adores, so it could happen!

Double Truffle

Stilton & Jarlsberg have managed to reunite once again and of course, there was cheese involved. Jarlsberg came over to New York to celebrate her birthday. They met up at Penn Station and enjoyed sandwiches from the Mario by Mary counter in the Pennsy. Jarls had the (redubbed) “Oliver” (see this post for further explanation) while Stilton tried the Caprese with mozzarella, a spicy tomato relish, and basil-based pesto. Both were quite good. Jarls also sampled their sea salt espresso chip cookie. Stil had a bite which she enjoyed, though she still wants to try their Nutella brownie.

ctmy87-truffled romano

Fast forward a few hours from that late lunch and the pair had reached Stilton’s country abode. There, in lieu of another full meal, J & S shared some tasty truffle-enhanced snacks. There was this truffled Romano (see above) that Stilton had picked up from the impressive cheese shelves at her new & improved grocery. And there were also some truffle & aioli flavored chips which stood in nicely for the truffle fries with aioli dipping sauce that she constantly craves. They washed it all down with a delectable rosé that Stilton had brought back from her travels through Tuscany last summer.

The only thing missing was the presence of their mutual friend and fellow turophile Idiazabal, who sadly had to postpone her plans to join them. The trio hopes to reunite all in the same place one day soon and feast upon heaps of cheese! Then, they can refer to themselves as the Triple Truffle Trio. 🙂