Aged Mimolette with Crackers

M - N

Mahon

Mahon is a DO cows milk cheese from the island of Minorca in Spain. It is one of the few cheeses produced in Spain that uses cows milk. The milk is sourced twice a day and only between the months of September and June. Mahon is a pressed cheese that has continued to retain its original shape, square with rounded edges and a recognizable orange colored rind that darkens as it ages. Its flavor is nutty and rich with slight undertones of acid and become more complex as the cheese ages. Its pate ranges from a pale white color to a darker straw color. There are four classifications of this cheese that are determined based on its maturity:

  • Fresco - aged within 10 days
  • Semi-Curado - aged at least 2 months
  • Curado - aged 6-10 months
  • Viejo or Anejo - aged approximately 1 year

Country: Spain
Region: Minorca
Texture: Semi-Soft to firm
Aging time: 10 days to 1 year
Pasteurized: Both versions are available

Majorero

Majorero is a DO  or DOP cheese from Spain that is made from goats milk. This cheese comes from Spanish island of Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands. The milk is sourced from the Majorera goat that primarily feed on marjoram and formed into cylindrical shapes. This cheese ranges from a soft and supple pate to a more firm and dense texture. When the cheese is younger, it has a milky and goaty flavor. As it ages, the flavor becomes more assertive and nutty. This cheese must be aged for at least 8-20 days but typically the more aged versions are the only ones allowed in the United States. This cheese can come without any coating on the rind, with pimenton (a type of paprika), or with gofio (roasted corn flower).

Country: Spain
Region: Fuerteventura, Canary Islands
Texture: Semi-Soft to Semi-Firm
Type of Milk: Goat
Aging Time: At least 20 days
Pasteurized: Both versions are made

Manchego

Manchego is Spain's most famous cheese. Manchego is a DO, sheep's milk cheese produced in the La Mancha region in Central Spain. The cheese is named after the Manchega sheep, the only variety of milk used. It is most resembled by the herringbone pattern on the rind that was originally left behind by the tough grass esparto that was used for the pressing. Now this molding is made of plastic but retains a similar pattern. The cheeses are aged in natural caves and have different stages of maturation:

  • "Fresco" - Aged 3 months with a pale ivory colored pate and a soft and fairly sweet flavor with sight salty undertones
  • "Semicurado" - Aged 4 to 6 months with a texture that is beginning to firm up and the flavor is starting to intensify
  • "Curado" - Aged more than 6 months (typically for 1 year), the cheese is now a hard cutting cheese
  • "Anejo" - Aged for 12-24 months

The typical flavor components of this cheese are milky, salty, with a sheepy sweetness towards the finish. The younger versions are much more mild with a softer texture and the more aged versions are sharper and dryer.

Country: Spain
Region: La Mancha
Texture: Semi-firm to hard
Type of Milk: Sheep
Aging Time: At least 3 months
Pasteurized: Both Pasteurized and Unpasteurized versions available

Manouri / Manoypi

Manouri is a PDO, semi-soft, fresh cheese that is made from drained whey, leftover from the production of feta cheese. It is then enriched with cream. It is a Greek cheese that is produced in Central and Western Macedonia and in Thessalia. Produced in logs, this cheese is bright white in appearance with a dense and grainy texture. Its flavor is similar to feta but it is not as salty. It is soft, rich and milky with citrus undertones. Manouri is traditionally used in the Greek dish Spanikopita and also named Manoypi.

Country: Greece
Region: Macedonia and in Thessalia
Texture: Semi-Soft
Type of Milk: Sheep, or a mixture of Sheep and Goat
Aging time: 3 Months
Pasteurized: Both versions are available

Le Marechal

Le Marechal is a raw cows milk cheese produced exclusively at the Fromagerie de Granges-Marnard Dairy in the town of Corcelles-AUX-Payernes in Switzerland. The cheese is manufactured in copper cauldrons with milk delivered twice a day to the creamery and pressed in hemp fabric and wooden vats.  The cheese is then covered in thyme, oregano, and other country herbs and aged in caves for about five months. The flavor is strong and nutty that resembles most to a sharp Gruyere with undertones of the herbs.

Country: Switzerland
Region: Corcelles-Aux-Payernes
Type of Milk: Cow
Aging Time: 5 months
Pasteurized: No

Mimolette

Mimolette is a pasteurized cows milk cheese, produced in the Nord Pas-de-Calais region in northern France that closely resembles the shape, size, and look of a melon. In fact, this cheese is produced by the same process of Dutch Edam.  There are many arguments as to where this cheese was originally produced. Some argue that Mimolette originated in Holland whereas others insist it was founded in France. During the reign of Louis XIV, it was illegal in France to import cheeses from Holland. One theory is that the French from Normandy developed this cheese as a result to their cultural ties to Holland. The cheese is bright orange in color with a natural, dusty looking rind. Its texture varies from firm to hard the flavor most closely resembles the sharp and tangy flavors of a well-aged cheddar. The cheese also carries the name “Boule de Lille” since the cheese originates from the town of Lille. This cheese is classified into four different categories based on its aging time:

  • Mimolette Jeune (aged 2 months)
  • Mimolette demi-vielle (aged 6 months)
  • Mimolette vielle (aged 12 months)
  • Mimolette tres vielle (aged 18-24 months)

Country: France
Region: Nord Pas-de-Calais
Texture: Firm to Hard
Type of Milk: Cow
Aging time: 2-24 months
Pasteurized: Yes

Moliterno

Moliterno is an Italian cheese named after the town where it originates in the southern region of Basilicata.  Most commonly known as a sheep cheese, it is also frequently made by blending a small percentage (10-30%) of goat’s milk. The cheese is formed in a basket for about 24 hours and left to age. While it is aging, the Moliterno is rubbed with olive oil to retain its moisture. The pate is firm and crumbles with a rich golden color. Its aroma is a balance of rustic and sweet fragrances. Its flavor is rich and salty with a strong bite. There are thee thee classifications of this cheese that are determined based on its maturity:

  • "Primative" - aged 2-6 months
  • "Mature" - aged at least 6 months
  • "Extra" - aged at least 1 year

Country: Italy
Region: Basilicata
Type of Milk: Sheep or Sheep and Goat
Texture: Hard
Aging Time: at least 2 months
Pasteurized: Yes

Montasio

Montasio is an Italian DOP cows milk cheese. It is a cooked, semi-hard cheese that is cylindrical in shape. An entire wheel is this cheese weighs approximately 14-15 lbs and it is 2-3 inches high. The cheeses was first produced in the 13th Century by Benedictine monks. Under current DOP laws, Montasio may only be produced within the geographical area of Friuli, Venetia Giulia, and the Veneto provinces of Belluno, and Treviso, together with parts of Padua and Venice. It is a mountain cheese that has a full nutty and slightly sweet flavor and a dense texture. It is typically a table cheese but can also be used for grating with the more mature varieties. There are three different types of Montasio:

  • "Fresco" - aged 2 months with a mild flavor
  • "Mezzano" - aged 5 to 10 months with a more powerful flavor
  • "Stravecchio" - aged over 10 months with a more nutty flavor and firmer texture

Country: Italy
Region: Northeastern Italy
Texture: Semi-Soft to Semi-Firm
Type of Milk: Cow
Aging Time: At least 2 months
Pasteurized: No

Monte Veronese

Monte Veronese is an Italian DOC cow's milk cheese. Produced in the Lessini mountainous area above Verona, this is a semi-firm cylindrical shaped cheese that can be made either with whole or partially skimmed milk, depending on its variety. Its pate is straw colored, its flavor is somewhat sweet and nutty, and its texture is rich and becomes denser with age. Monte Veronese is used as both a table and grating cheese.

There are two classifications of this cheese that are determined based on its maturity:

  • Fresco - Aged less than 60 days, made with whole milk and not found in the United States
  • D'Allevio - Aged at least 60 days and made with partially skimmed milk

Country: Italy
Region: Veneto
Texture: Semi-Soft to Semi-Hard
Type of Milk: Cow
Aging Time: At least 30 days
Pasteurized: No

Monte Tavoliere

Monte Tavoliere is a cow’s milk cheese from the Veneto region in Northern Italy. It is aged for approximately 60 days to create a semi-soft texture with an uneven scattering of eyes. The consistency and texture resemble similar cheeses in the Northern Italian area such as Asiago Pressato, Trugole, or Crucolo. The pate is soft and ivory colored. Its flavor is complex, tangy, and buttery but not overwhelmingly rich. It has a terrific capability to melt and still maintain its structure but can also work well as a table cheese. It works well as a mild table or melting cheese or when used in sandwiches.

Country: Italy
Region: Veneto
Texture: Semi-Soft
Type of Milk: Cow
Aging Time: 2 Months
Pasteurized: Yes

Morbier

Morbier is an AOC cows milk cheese from the Franch-Comte region in France. It is most recognized by its a layer of grayish black edible ash through the center of the ivory colored pate.  This cheese was originally made for personal consumption by the cheesemakers of Comte.  Ash was added to the leftover curd of the evening production to prevent a rind forming and to keep insects away.  The cheesemaking process continues by adding the remaining curd from the next morning’s production and allowing the cheese to age for at least two months. This results in a layered cheese, with a semi-soft and elastic pate that is creamy and slightly aromatic. The natural rind is sticky and forms a light brown color.

Country: France
Region: France-Comte
Texture: Semi-Soft
Type of Milk: Cow
Aging Time: At least 2 months
Pasteurized: No

Mozzarella

Mozzarella is an Italian pasta-filata cheese that originated in the southern region of Campania. However, now production of this cheese is made throughout the world and the word “Mozzarella” is now more a generic name for this type of cheese. The cheese is made by cutting the curds into small pieces and adding hot water to heat the cheese so that it develops a consistency that is elastic. The cheese maker will stretch and kneeds the cheese so that it reaches a proper texture and is formed into balls. The name is derived from this process using the word “mozzare” which means “to cut”.  Authentic mozzarella uses the milk from water buffalo and is a DOC for the region in Campania. Technically, the Mozzarella made from cow’s milk should be called “fior di latte” (milk of the flower). Both are soft, fresh, cheeses that are white in color and elastic in texture. It has an extremely creamy and milky flavor that is mild and suitable for cooking. There are also versions of this cheese that are smoked.

Country: Italy
Region: Campania and now throughout
Texture: Soft
Type of Milk: Cow or Water Buffalo
Aging time: None
Pasteurized: Yes

Munster

This is an AOC French cows milk cheese from Northeastern France. The cheese is made under different names on either side of the Vosges Mountains. In Alsace, on the eastern side of the mountains it is called Munster. In Lorraine, on the western side of the mountain it is known as Gerome. Munster received its AOC certification in 1969 but in 1978, the AOC Munster-Gerome united the two cheeses. This cheese has absolutely no resemblance to the generic, American version of the cheese Muenster. The French version is a very highly aromatic cheese with a sticky, red colored rind. The pate is smooth and creamy the cheeses full and rich flavor is attributed to the baryardy, grassy, and herbaceous aroma generated from the brine rubbed rind. The milk used to make Munster comes from the Vosgiennes cows, a breed that was imported from Scandinavia in the 18th century.

Country: France
Region: Alsace (North Eastern France)
Texture: Soft
Type of Milk: Cow
Aging Time: 2-3 Months
Pasteurized: By law in the US but not in most of Europe