We celebrate cheese this month and I have to say, cheese is one food I eat practically every day. I never seem to tire of the endless forms and flavors, in sauces and dips, on its own with crackers, on sandwiches – it’s a world of food opportunity!
Memories of Greece
You might think the Swiss consume the most cheese per person, but it’s actually the Greeks, at 60.1 pounds per person annually, with the majority being feta. One of my favorite trips was with two of my best friends to Greece. That’s where I met the wonder of fresh feta cheese. My fondest memory is sitting at the rooftop restaurant in Athens, with a glorious view of the Acropolis at night, bathed in light under a full moon, enjoying fresh feta cheese and crackers or topping a salad, or by itself. I swear, I would have put it into the fresh yogurt at breakfast if they’d offered.
It expanded my horizons beyond cheese from cows, but I haven’t been so adventurous as to try cheese from yaks, or reindeer for that matter, even though they’re just a few of the animals from whose milk cheese is made. Buffalo, sheep, goats – people have been making cheese for centuries, probably back to the Mesopotamians.
Cheese.com offers a searchable database of 1,831 varieties of cheese, by name, country of origins, type of milk used to produce, and texture. We don’t have that many recipes featuring this delectable food, but we certainly have a lot. Here are some favorites, starting with a couple for what the International Dairy Food Association says is the most popular cheese recipe in the United States – Macaroni & Cheese.
Shell macaroni, Alfredo sauce, white cheddar cheese, bread crumbs, Parmesan and butter – hungry yet? How-to video with recipe link here.
This decadently delicious Mac ‘N’ Cheese, from award-winning Chef John Kunkel, is covered in a Mornay Sauce made with four types of cheese, hot sauce, Dijon mustard, and a delicious blend of spices. Recipe here.
This Cheesy Breakfast Burrito Casserole is perfect to make ahead and bake in the morning. You can also double the recipe and freeze one for later! Feel free to get creative with fillings and toppings, especially those that are local or seasonal. Recipe here.
Luscious melted sharp white Cheddar cheese, salty crispy bacon, creamy peanut butter and a touch of sweet blackberry preserves! Recipe here.
This celery salad is crisp and perfect for any time of the year! All you need is a little time to chop up the ingredients, then leave it in the refrigerator to liven the flavors. How-to video with recipe link here.
Here’s a sandwich that takes everything good about caprese and combines it with everything good about grilled cheese–it’s a highbrow/lowbrow combo! How-to video with recipe link here.
These warm and cheesy scones make an unexpected and welcome addition to any meal. These scones are full of flavor. Try them with dinner and maybe even breakfast. How-to video with recipe link here.
Bubbling-hot and delicious homemade enchiladas, hot from the oven in about 30 minutes. This easy-to-prepare recipe offers a great way to serve a comforting cheese enchilada dinner the whole family will enjoy–without spending all night in the kitchen. How-to video here.
Enjoy the world of cheese. And thank you Athens, for expanding my cheese horizons. I will never forget it.