Canadian Cheese Grand Prix

May6

Until I was 19 years old and traveling through Europe, I did not eat cheese with one exception: mozzarella and it was always cooked, either on top of pizza or broiled with paprika on an English muffin or crusty bun.  The latter was my Mom’s invention and we would often have one at breakfast time.  I am still not fond of blue cheese but have loved every other variety I have ever tasted.  I certainly would not say that I have a discerning cheese  palete.

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Recently, I met someone who does-Chef Michael Howell was a judge for the Canadian Cheese Grand Prix held earlier this year in Montreal.

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He has ben touring Canada to showcase the winners including:

Ricotta (Quality Cheese)

Grizzly Gouda (Sylvan Star)

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Le Noble (Fromagerie Domaine Federal)

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Bleu d’Elizabeth (Fromagerie du Presbytere)

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Le Mamirolle (Fromagerie Eco-Delices)

Applewood Smoked Cheddar (Cows)

Queso Fresco Cheese (Latin Foods)

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I was surprised to see that a “fresh” cheese – the Ricotta was this year’s grand prize winner.  I can’t wait to whip up a manicotti and taste it this weekend.  I was also intrigued that there is now a grilled cheese category and that a Queso Fresco won.  Winnipeg has their own maker of this variety in Whiteshell Cheese.

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I went to their facility on Dufferin Ave. in Winnipeg’s North End this week to pick some up for the TV appearances.

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Over the course of two days 225 cheeses were judged in 19 categories. The judges evaluated the taste of each selection as well as firmness, texture, visual appeal such as creaminess for soft cheeses and colour for hard cheeses and those with rinds.

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Like a little mouse, I had a couple of nibbles of the winners as I was striking the set (don’t tell any one).   My favourite selection was the Applewood Smoked Cheddar which I can imagine as a grilled cheese sandwich sometime soon.  Is it lunch time yet?

Kath’s quote: “Splendid cheeses they were, ripe and mellow, and with a two hundred horse-power scent about them that might have been warranted to carry three miles, and knock a man over at two hundred yards.”-Jerome K. Jerome

wall heart

Love-that is all.


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