Monday, November 8, 2010

Day Two Seventy Two - Pumpkin Marriage Mondays

With the leaves turning golden oranges, yellows, and reds and the air getting chillier, I thought what's perfect for a Marriage Mondays this time of year? Pumpkins of course! Featured traditionally carved into jack o'lanterns for Halloween or pureed and utilized as in the interior for pies at Thanksgiving -- pumpkins are quintessential Fall if you ask me.

So what cheese could pair with pumpkin?

I'm not thinking here in the pie category but in the savory yet sweet vein... stay tuned for the winning recipe tomorrow...

Contestant Number # 1: Fleur du Maquis - When Americans think Corsican cheese, they tend to think of Fleur du Maquis (Flower of the Maquis). What is maquis? It's a Corsican term for underbrush greenery that was so thick and unmanageable that robbers and fighters could hide successfully within it. That being said, our first contestant is not prickly and overly tangled with greenery. A semi soft sheep's milk cheese whose exterior is covered and crusted with rosemary, fennel seeds, juniper berries and some bird's eye chiles. I know that sounds like quite the intense flavor explosion in your mouth, fret not, it is the perfect marriage of intense and subtle flavors paired with the creamy unctuousness of the sheep's milk interior. Will this herb-tastic first contestant win our pumpkin's heart this week?

Contestant Number # 2: Mimolette - Our second contestant surely has that orange hue of the pumpkin down pat, however it resembles a cantaloupe from the outside. This aged cow's milk cheese hailing from Lille, France, gains its orange color from annatto, a natural dye. And its crater-y, craggly exterior? Well that comes from the cheese mites that help the aging process. Modeled on a Dutch style Edam cheese, this sure is far superior -- more decadent, florally fragrant, caramelly, butterscotchy, and all around crumbly. Will orange win out for time with our orange star this week?

Contestant Number # 3 : Gorgonzola Mascarpone Torta - Our last and final contestant is Italian decadence in a mouthful -- layers of spicy punchy gorgonzola mixed with the fresh creamy sweetness of mascarpone -- a fantastic combo of sweetness and savoriness, great for amateur blue cheese eaters, but all around delish. Soft and supple -- it melts in your mouth in the most fantastic of ways but will it meld with our pumpkin this week?

That's all for now folks... Stay tuned for results tomorrow.

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