culinary review
   
   

Smooth and Flavorful Homemade Cheese Spread

Tue Jun 15, 2010 8:15 am
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Comments: 2 Views: 2398

One of the best ways to utilize your left-over cheese – especially if you have small bits of different kinds, is to make acheese_spread divine cheese spread. Almost any nice strongly flavored cheese could be used, but of course the flavor of the spread will be affected by what kind of cheese you add.

We were first introduced to this concept by Alton Brown, in an episode called “Fromage Forte.” The direct translation in French is “Strong Cheese' and that's certainly correct. If you use a few strong cheeses, your spread will be extremely flavorful.

The concept is just so simple: different kinds of cheeses, butter, wine, garlic, herbs. Could there be anything better?

It's essential to use a food processor to mix the cheeses completely. You want to end up with a really smooth spread, and that will require a few minutes of processing.

Method:

1. Start off with gathering your different cheeses (for example, use bits of Parmesan, Sharp Cheddar, Provolone, Blue Cheese, Asiago, Mozarella, Camembert). You can use a combination of soft and hard-rind cheeses.

2. Let the cheese come up to room temperature, remove any hard rinds, and cut into small cubes.

3. Place the cheese in a food processor and add a few tablespoons of butter (depending on how much cheese you use). Add a garlic clove, and some dry white wine. Start processing, and possibly add more wine if it's too dry.

Tip! If you are planning to store the spread and save for later (it will be better if it rests forcheese_spread a few hours anyway), then make sure to add enough wine. You want the spread to be quite loose, as it will thicken up in once it cools.

Process for a few minutes, or until it reaches the consistency of whipped cream: nice, smooth and fluffy. Taste and possibly season with salt and pepper.

Flavorings:

While this spread is very flavorful on its own, you might want to flavor it further, depending on what kind of cheese you use. If you are using relatively mild cheeses, then some additional flavor might be nice.

Possible flavorings: fresh herbs, sun dried tomatoes, olives, anchovies...


Either serve right away with crackers or vegetables, or store in an air-tight container. This spread can be stored about one week in the fridge.



Comments
Tue Dec 29, 2009 5:20 pm
Name: celine | Comment: delicious!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tue Jun 15, 2010 8:15 am
Name: Carl | Comment: Alton Brown was the source I used for the same basic recipe. Allow me to add some additional notes.

Although there are no preservatives in this recipe it froze well and I am enjoying it two months after I made it. The consistency is a little different, but the taste is fine. I figure if I took the time to let it warm up to room temperature and beat it I'd recover some of the original creaminess.

Adding a little cream cheese helped to make it more spreadable.

A local grocery store deli makes their own cheese spread and one of their flavor secrets is Western salad dressing. It really adds some zing to the taste!

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