I love cheese. I love it, love it, love it. My Pop also loved cheese and I when I visited I was super happy because he always had a block of swiss cheese on the table for immediate eating like other people have butter out. To this day I prefer my cheese to be room temperature!
My love is not all about plain old swiss or colby, either. I have a big, big thing for fancy cheeses. And when I heard about Sargento Tastings and their fabulous flavors I was instantly intrigued and couldn't wait to sink my teeth into a few. It doesn't hurt that these little cute blocks sell for around $2.69 each (have you seen the price of fancy cheesees before, this is amazing, people!) but I really like that they're from a brand that I already know and trust. What tastings do they have to offer?
- Aged Wisconsin Cheddar and Aged Vermont White Cheddar – ripened for 12 months. Savory, firm, dry.
- Bruschetta Jack – Monterrey Jack flush with sun-dried tomato, basil and garlic. Creamy, savory.
- New Zealander – Gouda and sharp Cheddar. Sweet, nutty.
- Fiesta Pepper Jack – Monterrey Jack filled with four fiery peppers. Delicate, buttery, spicy.
- Medium Asiago – an intensely flavored hard cheese. Smooth, nutty.
- Creamy Havarti – melt-in-your-mouth special recipe. Smooth, soft, luxurious.
- Parmentino™ – Parmesan and English cheddar perfectly combined. Full flavored, tangy.
Just because I'm constantly pushing myself to try new foods, and cheeses in particular, it doesn't mean I've had them all. I'm especially digging this Parmentino™! To be honest when I'm alone I'd be just as happy digging into some New Zealander and a bag of chips but let's work on some fancier pairings perfect for company, shall we?
First up one of my favorite cheeses of all time… Creamy Havarti. Now remember that is super soft and smooth which makes it great to spread on some simple table crackers or firm bosc pears. Add a little bit of fresh dill to kick this combo into something practically gourmet!
A little tip for serving freshly cut pears and apples… to prevent these guys turning brown and yicky before your company arrives, mix about a tablespoon of honey into some room temperature water. Toss the fruit in and make sure all sides are covered, remove and allow to dry. They'll be tasty and fresh looking all night!
Next let's work with some Aged Cheddar. Whether you choose the yellow or white, you've got a classic combo going when you pair with freshly cut apples. Add some dried cranberries and apricot horseradish and you're really kicking!
Though it may sound fancy, to prepare your fruited horseradish, simply mix prepared horseradish and preserves in your choice of flavors (cherry is also phenomenal!) and you're done!
Last but not least we've got some incredible Bruschetta Jack. Remember that this tasty cheese has sundried tomatoes, garlic and basil, right? It's a pretty savory cheese all on it's own and can totally be served as such, but let's get fancy! Paired with some rustic homemade bread, black or green olives and olive oil with freshly minced garlic and man, oh, man are you ready for some serious snacking!
And now tell me, which cheese are you dying to try and what would you pair it with?