Sunday, February 13, 2011

Cheese of the month: Camembert de Normandie (AOC)

Camembert comes from the Pay's d'Auge area of Normandy in Northern France. This cheeseboard favourite originated in Crouttes in 1761 by Marie Christine Harel,who perfected her cheese recipe taking advice from a priest from nearby Brie. The cheese was famously issued to French troops during World War I, becoming firmly fixed in French popular culture as a result.

Today, because of it's AOC status, it is made to very strict specifications. It can only be made in three territories in Normandy, and from normand cows.

As a young cheese, Camembert has a creamy taste but as it matures the taste becomes stronger and even quite pungent (I have had to put very ripe Camembert outside in solitary confinement before, the smell was so strong!)

Some people say that Camembert goes best with white wines, if eating with red wine then a light one low in tannin would be best, as strong red wines can give a metallic taste.

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