Monday, November 22, 2010

Twenty Famous European Cheeses

The most famous cheeses in the world are from Europe. This is the reason that many other cheeses are based on European recipes. I have decided to select twenty of the most famous ones.

The country which consumes the most cheese per capita is France. Five famous French cheeses are Boursin, Brie, Camembert, Neufchatel and Roquefort. Brie and Camembert are probably the two most famous French cheeses. They are very similar cheeses but Brie is traditionally sold in a bigger wheel than Camembert and has a milder flavour. Boursin is a soft cheese flavoured with garlic and herbs. Neufchatel is also a soft cheese with the flavour of mushroom. Roquefort is a blue cheese which is ripened in caves of southern France.

Another country which produces many popular cheeses is Italy. Four famous Italian cheeses are Mozzarella, Parmesan, Provolone and Romano. Mozzarella was originally produced in the south of Italy. It is a very good cheese for baking. Parmesan is a hard cheese which is flavoured with brine. Provolone is a traditional semi-hard cheese. Romano is a hard cheese and is one of the oldest in Italy.

The Netherlands also produces great cheeses. Three well-known Dutch cheeses are Edam, Gouda and Leyden. Edam and Gouda are similar semi-hard cheeses. A notable difference between the two is that Edam is made with skim milk and Gouda is made with homogenized. Leyden is a hard cheese which is drier than Edam and Gouda.

Switzerland produces a number of fine cheeses. Two of the finest are Emmental and Gruyere. Emmental is also known as Swiss Cheese. It is a hard cheese famous for its holes. Gruyere is also a hard cheese which is flavoured in brine. Some varieties are also smoked.

England is the home of Cheddar. It is a semi-hard cheese which is originally white in colour. However, some Cheddars have colour added which makes them yellow or orange.

Spain produces Manchego, a hard cheese with small holes.

Greece is known for Feta, a soft cheese preserved in brine. It is one of the ingredients in Greek Salad.

Germany produces a number of fine cheeses. One is Tilsit, a semi-hard cheese with small holes.

Denmark is known for blue cheese and for Havarti, a traditional semi-soft cheese.

Norway is the home of Jarlsberg, a hard cheese with holes and a flavour of nut.

France and Italy are the two European countries which produce the greatest number and variety of European cheeses. Their cheeses are undoubtedly the most famous in the world. However, other European countries also produce popular cheeses of high quality.

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