Munster CheeseAuthentic Munster cheese is made only from the milk of cows that graze in a designated area in the Vosges mountains in the east of France. It is a soft white cheese with a reddish-orange washed rind and is noted for its strong smell and pronounced taste.
Cheese HistoryLike most cheese in France, Munster has a long tradition behind it. Many centuries ago this cheese was made by Benedictine monks who had migrated to the Alsace region of France. Apparently the monks had vowed to forgo meat and were dependant upon dairy products for a part of their nourishment. Eventually the savoir-faire for creating this cheese was passed on to the local population. The origins of this cheese are recalled to us in its name. The word munster derives from the word monastary and you will also find the village of Munster in the Vosges mountains, testimony to the ancient inhabitants of this land.
Where to Buy MunsterUnless you visit France, you'll probably be unable to find AOC ( Appellation d'Origine Controlée ) Munster made from unpasteurized cow's milk. Even here in France most of the Munster available in the grocery store is made from pasteurized milk. Although connoisseurs say it lacks some of the flavor of an unpasteurized product, a pastuerized Munster makes a reasonable substitute especially if you are going to cook with this cheese. Don't confuse Munster with Meunster cheese which actually looks quite similar. Muenster cheese, which is more similar to a German cheese of the same name, is a popular cheese to cook with as well, but its flavor is much less pronounced.
How to Enjoy Munster
Cooking with MunsterMunster is a great cheese to cook with because it melts easily into dishes. It is traditionally paired with oinons and potatoes. Tartiflette , a that officially hails from further south in the Savoy region of France, becomes Munster Coiffée (Munster with a good hair cut I suppose) when you use Munster cheese. For a lovely and simple dinner, pair a fresh green salad with this luscious
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