Nora Singley's Recent Articles
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Try This: Cheese-Stuffed Meatballs
Last month’s Everyday Food magazine shared a great way to make your meatballs literally burst with cheese. It’s easy to do, and while they recommend using ground chicken for a different take on chicken Parmesan, you can choose whatever meatball you like best.Here’s their simple technique: Form your meatballs, flatten them into discs, and top with a few small pieces of fresh mozzarella. Then simply reform into a ball, enclosing the cheese within the meat.
May 2, 2019
Last Minute Thanksgiving Appetizer: Apricot Goat Cheese Ball with Fried Rosemary and Shallots
When I was growing up, my mom used to make a pasta from The Silver Palate cookbook with potatoes, rosemary, and dried apricots. There’s something that even a middle schooler can enjoy about the oddly effective combination of rosemary and apricots.You can make this cheese ball in advance — say, today — and keep it chilled. The flavors deepen the longer it sits, and it’ll hold its shape better the colder it is.
May 2, 2019
Homemade Gift Recipe To Give or Keep: Fig & Olive Tapenade for Blue Cheese
I recently visited Jimtown Store in Healdsburg, California. It’s a quaint little country store that acts as part gift and antique shop, part thirst quencher rest stop for bikers traversing wine country. In one case, they boasted a tasty-looking fig and olive spread for blue cheese.I figured that the Jimtown condiment couldn’t be hard to replicate, and would make a pretty thoughtful gift around this time of year, especially if accompanied by a healthy wedge of blue.
May 2, 2019
Why Does Cheese Have Holes?
You don’t think much about it, probably because you just accept it as a fact: Some cheeses have holes. But why? Cue cheese science.Ask Miss Muffet. Cheese is made up of curds. Whey — that liquidy, non-fat, non-curd component of milk, is the other by-product of cheesemaking, drained off and dumped. The curds, in contrast — that is, the protein and fatty solids in milk — join together and turn into cheese.But how does this happen?
May 2, 2019
Something New: A Fig Ball
I feel like I’ve seen and tasted my share of tasty things that fall under the this-can-go-on-your-cheese-plate umbrella. But it’s been awhile since a honey, mostarda, jam, nut, or dried fruit has sincerely bowled me over.And then I came upon this seemingly unassuming but stupefyingly delicious fig ball.I was visiting a friend who works at Tribeca’s newish All Good Things food market.
May 2, 2019
Whey Tasty Whey. Yes, Whey.
For the past few weeks, I’ve been making a lot of ricotta for a project at my full-time job. As a result, there’s been a lot of whey floating around. When faced with my first windfall, a coworker told me that dumping the whey is a sin, and that I should throw some on ice and drink up. And now, I’ve got a big problem.Consider this my official plea to cheesemakers: Forget about cheese. Start selling whey.I’m beginning to panic a bit.
May 2, 2019
Today Is Squeaky Cheese Day: Tillamook Shipping Curds For the First Time Ever!
Get ready for it. Today is Squeaky Cheese Day, or at least it is according to Tillamook Cheese, which celebrates its 104th birthday by offering their cheddar cheese curds for the very first time to curd enthusiasts.Typically, Tillamook only offers their curds at their factory in Oregon. 104 is a big birthday, though, and so if you get your order in on time, you, too, can partake. Apparently there’s a limited number of curds available. Hot commodity alert.
May 2, 2019
Something Special for Your Cheese Board: Whipped Seashore Honey
You know how some things are just better with a textural twist? Think about these: butter, cream cheese, cottage cheese, heavy cream. When whipped, they’re just tastier. If you have yet to try whippped honey, get ready to flip — and not just for the concept, but for this exact brand — from Québec. I’ll tell you how to get it, what cheeses shine most brightly alongside, and the two most inspired ways to serve it on your next cheese board.
May 2, 2019
My Uncool Kitchen Tool: Dental Floss
When I used to work behind a cheese counter, I could count on a variety of cheese knives to get the cutting done: huge, double-handled cleavers, large chef knives, and slender, sharp slicers. For the most part, it’s not a problem if you don’t personally own tons of different knives; once you get smaller portions of cheese home, you can use a pretty standard knife on nearly anything.
May 2, 2019
Cheese For Lunch: 5 New Takes on a Ploughman’s Lunch
A ploughman’s lunch doesn’t have to be something that’s only done in England. Because really, shouldn’t making cheese the centerpiece of a meal be a universal concept? Think of it as a deconstructed sandwich.A ploughman’s lunch is a simple template: pair cheese with some bread, chutney, and maybe some meat or pickles or hard-boiled egg, and call it a lunch. But what about getting a little creative with it?
May 2, 2019
Cheese & Beer by Janet Fletcher
If you have yet to experience the pleasure of cheese and beer together, or if you’re a strict believer in pairing cheese with wine and wine alone, here’s a book to open, widen, and/or convert your mindset. And if you’re already on the beer and cheese bandwagon, there’s no question that this is a book for you. I became a believer in beer and cheese about eight years ago, when I started getting geeky about pairing beverages with cheese.
May 2, 2019
Fresh Robiola: Seek This Out.
Fresh goat cheese, fresh ricotta, and cream cheese. They all serve a purpose, and each has its place. There’s one cheese that I believe combines the best elements of each of these three fresh cheeses. It can sometimes be a bit elusive, but it’s so worth the hunt. It’s my go-to cheese this time of year: all at once light, tangy, and creamy, like no other cheese around.
May 2, 2019
A Surprise From Carr’s: How I Fell In Love With Their Whole Wheat Cracker
This week, a continued conversation about the best kind of cracker for cheese. Since I prefer serving cheese with bread, a cracker’s got to carry a certain kind of special quality if I’m going that route. And these most certainly do. Surprisingly, though, I passed them by for years, not knowing exactly what they were all about.Would you ever think that a Carr’s brand cracker could blow your mind?
May 2, 2019
A Cheese In Honor of the New Royal Baby: Royal Addition Cheddar
I’m not sure what other country would release a special cheese solely to commemorate the birth of a new member of the royal family. But somehow, it seems appropriate for England to do just this. Perhaps it’s their strong tradition in cheesemaking. It just feels classy. And proper. And so, for a limited time, find this special edition cheddar stateside, to honor the new addition across the pond.There’s one conundrum, though. The cheese has been aged for a year.
May 2, 2019
Like Humboldt Fog Goat Cheese? Try Cypress Grove’s Purple Haze
If you’re into cheese, you’ve likely heard of — and love — Humboldt Fog. The same creamery, Northern California’s Cypress Grove, offers another great goat, in a fresher style, and peppered with some pretty tasty embellishments. Purple Haze is easy to find, super bright-tasting and creamy, and pretty much perfect for this time of year.What makes this cheese unique is the addition of lavender and wild fennel pollen. Lavender can be a polarizing flavor.
May 2, 2019
Why Some Ricotta Is Better Than Others
Is ricotta one of your favorite things ever? Do you ever devise recipes centered solely around the incorporation of ricotta? If you’ve ever faced the disappointment of an underwhelming, grainy, tasteless, version, then you might wonder why some ricotta is better — so much better — than others. There’s really nothing worse than opening up a package of ricotta and discovering a grainy — nearly sandy, sometimes! — texture beneath the lid.
May 2, 2019
Two Amazing Cheese Appetizers from Italy
I spent a bit of time in Italy last month and came away with a lot of cheese fodder. Hard to pick just one thing to highlight. Two of my favorites are easily replicable now that I’m back home, and they’re both super simple, super elegant starters. Or rather, aperitivi. The first contains just four ingredients, and would be equally welcome as a starter or a dessert: Figs, pomegranate seeds, olive oil, and plum-sized balls of fresh mozzarella.
May 2, 2019
Book Review: Wine + Cheese Pairing Swatchbook by Max McCalman
A swatchbook is precisely the name for one of the cheese world’s newest publications. Max McCalman, maitre fromager of Artisanal Cheese and author of numerous other books on cheese, namely, The Cheese Plate, has compiled years of tastings into the closest thing that the cheese community will have to a Benjamin Moore color book. Flip through, pick your cheese, match your wine, and a rainbow of flavors appears instantly at your disposal.
May 2, 2019
What You Want and Why: Rogue Creamery Smokey Blue
I wanted to profile one of my favorite fall cheeses this week. Because it’s just so fall-y. Rogue Creamery’s superlative Smokey Blue is precisely that: smokey and blue. And so apropos for this time of year. Rogue Creamery, in Central Point, Oregon, makes some of the country’s most adored blues. It’s like their specialty. The creamery’s most coveted accolade is a World’s Best Blue Cheese award at the 2003 World Cheese Awards in London, a first for a U.S.
May 2, 2019
Check ‘Em Out! Formaggio Kitchen’s Exclusive French Imports
I recently had the serious pleasure of tasting some pretty special French cheese. They’re the style of cheese with the oldest cheesemaking history in the world: mountain varieties from the French Pyrenees, made with raw sheep milk. And thanks to Formaggio Kitchen, you can taste them, too. Have you been to Formaggio Kitchen? They’re a Cambridge specialty cheese shop that’s been around for over 30 years.
May 2, 2019
Cheese For a Crowd: A Formula for Deciding How Much Cheese to Buy
Do you serve cheese for Thanksgiving? Or maybe you’re bringing it along as your contribution? How do you know just exactly how much to purchase, so you have just the right amount? Nothing worse than not enough cheese, right? (Though leftover cheese ain’t that bad.) There’s a little formula that you might not know about, which could inform your wedge-choosing this Thanksgiving day.
May 2, 2019
One More Reason Not to Buy Pre-Grated Cheese
The other week, a friend brought over some pre-grated Parmigiano-Reggiano to cook with. It was from a nice cheese shop, and you could tell that the cheese had been grated very recently. It tasted good and wasn’t dry or dusty. I was impressed with the quality, and the convenience factor was pretty high. But we didn’t use all of it. And now I have one more reason why I will never buy cheese pre-grated. It molded. And quickly, too.
May 2, 2019
Why Triple Cream Cheeses Are Less Fattening Than You Think
For those of you who shy away from the triple-crèmes and rich buttery numbers of the cheese world, now may be appropriate timing for a bit of cheese info. Despite their names, denoting double- and triple- contents of cream and butterfat, these cheese specimens may not be as fattening as you think. Call it cheese propaganda, but it’s the truth. Fat content in cheese is measured in parts per dry matter.
May 2, 2019
The Best Way to Quickly Bring Cold Cheese to Room Temperature
It’s pretty well-understood now that cheese at room temperature equals happy cheese. Held at that frigid, refrigerator temperature, cheese is left paralyzed at a flavor standstill, but with a little warmth, fat and protein molecules loosen up a bit. But how oh how to emulate cheese that’s been treated to room temperature for the suggested hour before eating, if you haven’t succeeded in anticipating properly?
May 2, 2019
The Best Cheeses For Tacos: Plus 8 Cheesy Taco Filling Ideas
The other day, I was perusing the internet for some new ideas for an upcoming Super Bowl party. Somehow, after wandering down a meandering web path of odd finger foods and less-than-stellar game day snacks, I had a revelation about tacos. And cheese. Read on for eight new thoughts on taco fillings and cheeses to accompany them. Want the taco pictured above?
May 2, 2019
Yes, Pregnant Women Can Eat Good Cheese: Pregnancy-Safe Cheese Ideas for a Baby Shower
The conversation over what kind of cheese is cool for consumption during pregnancy has got to be one of the more polarizing debates among cheese-eaters-with-child.
May 2, 2019
How To Assemble a Classic Cheese Board
It’s time to embrace the cheesy side of life. And there’s no better way to do so than to get down with a classic cheese board, complete with all the best fixings. Here are our favorite pointers on assembling a classic cheese plate, including how to pick the best specimens, which cheeses should make the cut, and what tricks to keep in mind when assembling (and eating) your plate. Start by visiting a reputable cheesemonger.
May 1, 2019
Make Queso Fresco! The Cheesemonger
It’s easier than you think. Promise. Like most cheese, all it takes is 3 ingredients: Milk, an acid — in this case, white vinegar — and salt. Ready, set….…WAIT. What is queso fresco? I’ve talked about it before in greater detail, but it’s basically exactly what it means in Spanish: “fresh cheese.” Pretty vague, yes, but as you’ll discover in its recipe, it doesn’t get any fresher than this.
Oct 21, 2009
5 Favorite Old-Fashioned Kitchen Gadgets
We’ve talked about useless gadgets and useful ones, but these mostly recent tools didn’t include some of our real favorite kitchen gadgets. Ingenious kitchen devices have been around for hundreds of years, and we love some of the most old-fashioned ones. So here, from apple peeler to cherry pitter, are some of our very favorite old-school kitchen gadgets.
Aug 6, 2009
How Old is Too Old? The Cheesemonger
Considering that I’m a cheesemonger, I’m surprisingly not too discriminating when it comes to old cheese. Admittedly, the quality of a cheese that’s been sitting in your fridge will never be superior to its condition upon purchase, but just because a cheese has sat in the back corner of your deli drawer doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s not fit for consumption.But just how old is too old?Always try to consume cheese within a few days of bringing it home.
Jun 30, 2009