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Cure Nantais

 

Cure Nantais is a soft, washed rind, cow's milk cheese from France. It has the taste of smoky bacon and spices, and a smooth and wet rind. It is made in Nantais in Anjou region of Pays-de-la-Loire n France. It was brought to the region by a monk who was fleeing during the period of the French revolution.

 

The cheese matures in a period of 1 month, and has a fat content of 40%. It resembles the semi soft Saint Paulin cheese, but has a more characteristic flavor, which it acquires by the frequent rinsing during the maturation period. There are small holes through the cheese. It pairs well with white wine due to its deep heady flavor.

 

The cheese is available in small square shapes with round corners. The rind is pale yellow in color and darker on the edges, and has a smooth appearance. The cheese inside is of ivory color.

 

History of Cure Nantais Cheese

The cheese's origin dates back to the French Revolution. It was created by a monk named Curé, who was fleeing from Vendee on the central coast along the Atlantic Ocean to save himself from persecution by the French. Many small farms made this cheese through history, but in recent times its production is being done in modern dairy farms where the traditional cheese making procedure is complemented with modern equipment and techniques for more efficient mass production.

 

Preparation of Cure Nantais Cheese

The cheese is made of pasteurized cow's milk, which is curdled by addition of rennet. The curds are uncooked and unpressed. The cheese is allowed to mature for a period of 1 month, and the final product is made in square shapes of 4 inch diameter and 1 inch depth.

 

Cure Nantais Recipes

Cure Nantais is eaten on its own as a part of a cheese platter, or used as an ingredient in various dishes.  Some popular recipes suggest its use in molten form in fish dishes, or over pears or apples. It is also used in gratins or tarts. Cure Nantais goes particularly well with white wines, and some good examples are Gros Plant or Muscadet.