Mont d’Or Cheese of France

Written by on September 11, 2015 in Franche-Comte, Gastronomy

mont-dor

There’s no other word for it, Mont d’or cheese is unctuous, so much so, and here is a weird cheese fact – it’s one of only  a few French cheeses you have to eat with a spoon!

Gooey, runny, sticky and liquescent (and that’s not a word you’ll often see applied to cheese) Mont d’Or or Vacherin Mont d’Or or Vacherin du Haut-Daubs is so French it should be wearing a beret and carrying a baguette. It’s named after Mont d’Or (Golden Mountain) in the Jura region, Franche Comté, department of Doubs.

In France it is revered as the best of the raw milk cheeses and when you taste it for the first time – you’ll understand why.

It was a favourite fromage of King Louis XV and is the only French cheese to be eaten with a spoon. It is only made between August 15 and March 15, and derives its unique nutty taste from the spruce bark in which it is wrapped and only eleven factories in the French Jura region are licensed to produce it. It’s a protected cheese and there’s nothing else quite like it.

If you get a really ripe Mont d’Or you can eat it straight out of the pot – dip in a hunk of fresh baguette and scoop it up, or slather it on with a spoon! Its’ got a delicious nutty, earthy taste.

Or bake it – a really popular way to eat it in France as it brings out even more flavour.

How to bake Mont d’Or Cheese

Preheat the oven to 200C/ 400F/Gas 6.

Remove the lid and pop the box on a baking tray.

There are different ways to cook it, plain, with a dash of pepper and/or some sea salt, a drizzle of olive oil, some garlic, truffle shavings, herbs or wine. You can dip bread, croutons, sausage, whatever you like as with a fondue. But, here is one of the most loved recipes for mont d’or chaud, baked Mont d’Or:

Take a knife and poke a few slits in the cheese and pop some thinly sliced garlic in to the holes.

Grind some black pepper over the top, pour over a splash of white wine

Pop in the oven for about 8 minutes until completely soft

Remove and eat with crusty baguette, or new potatoes and wash down with the rest of the white wine!

Extra tips: 

Cut a cross in the top, spread, and pour in some Kirsch, Armagnac, or liqueur of your choice, warm through, and serve with bread sticks.

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