Gruyere - The Ultimate Holiday Cheese

Gruyère owes its characteristic taste to the best quality unpasteurized milk coming straight from cows fed on lush Swiss grasses during the summer and hay during the winter. Long sandstone cave aging and salt washing help develop the intense nutty flavor. The natural, rusty brown rind is hard and dry. The paste has a wonderful complexity of flavors - at first fruity, later becomes more earthy and nutty.

Pairings

Very nice with a bright and fruity Reisling, or a crisp Sauvignon Blanc. Excellent with strong, dark seasonal ales, stouts and porters. A favorite for fondue as it is a fantastic melting cheese due to the high fat content. On a cheese platter serve with cured meats, dried fruits and sliced fresh bosc or comice pears.

Basic Fondue

1/2 pound imported Swiss cheese, shredded
1/2 pound Gruyere cheese, shredded
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 garlic clove, peeled
1 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon cherry brandy, such as kirsch
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

In a small bowl, coat the cheeses with cornstarch and set aside. Rub the inside of the ceramic fondue pot with the garlic and discard. Over medium heat, add the wine and lemon juice and bring to a gentle simmer. Gradually stir the cheese melting gradually. Once smooth, stir in cherry brandy and mustard. Set out an assortment of your favorite things such as cubed bread, apple slices, potatoes, cornichons and charcuterie etc...

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