When I was growing up, cheese in our household was almost exclusively of the processed variety. Some even came out of a jar, like yellow glue. Grandma and Grandpa would have the real stuff – Colby longhorn or a bitter Swiss, mostly. It wasn’t until I was off on my own after college – and in the ashram, especially – that I discovered how marvelous natural cheese could be.
Here are ten favorites.
- Cheddar. These days, we rely on Cabot. Mild to sharp, it’s all good.
- Calef’s. A general store in a neighboring town makes its own, starting with rat trap but extending into cheddar. The roasted garlic and wasabi variations are special treats here, especially after picking apples.
- Mozzarella. Lovely stringiness for pizzas and French onion soup.
- Parmesan. Grated on soups, pastas, and salads, of course, but also delightful with eggplant.
- Feta. Let’s start on salads for a Greek twist.
- Baby Swiss. Especially when made by nearby Amish cooperatives as I learned living in Ohio.
- Provolone. Love it on sandwiches, hot or cold.
- Gruyere. Uncork a wine, too, and open the crackers.
- Gouda. Ditto. With a sliced apple, anyone?
- Cream. For bagels and cheesecakes, especially.
What would you add to the list?