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Hankering for some Hirten

As always, one of the best perks that come from food blogging is getting to try all kinds of food that you might not normally get around to checking out. We get invited to events, we are sent samples and given vouchers to purchase different things. This is one of those times so let's get it out there and make sure I tell you that I was asked to try this cheese by Castello right up front.

I was given a coupon to try a cheese from Castello's new Alps collection recently and I chose to try the hirten cheese . There are three other cheeses in the collection and I plan to try them as well but for some reason, the hirten spoke to me and yelled "pick me! pick me!"

I found it at Loblaw's in the cheese section behind the deli counter after much searching so you might have to ask someone where it is, like I did. I got mine there but it's pretty widely available and you can check on website to find the other stores if there is not a Loblaws near you. I love that the day I bought this cheese, I also picked up a sequinned scarf and some tights at Joe's so if you don't have a Loblaws with a Joe Fresh store in it near you, I am sorry for your loss.

After letting it sit out and get to room temperature, we had it on little, crispy toasts that The Neighbour makes with a dollop of a spicy pepper berry preserves and a glass of prosecco. Everyone enjoyed the mellow, slightly sweet flavour. I am normally a stinky sock type of cheese girl but The Kid and Shack prefer milder cheeses so they were especially happy with the choice. This cheese is also a perfect match with the spicy jam and since I live for cheese and spicy jams and pepper jellies, things worked out nicely for everyone.

The colour is a bit deeper and more orange than my photos are showing but it was the holidays and we were on the fly so I aplogize but I used my iphone to take the photos.  I am actually lucky that I got any photos at all because it was eaten up pretty quickly and it was getting dark so, on second thought, thank god for my iphone.

It is not a strong tasting cheese at all and would lend itself to all types of dishes if you chose to cook with it. I also really liked it with this crazy fermented kaiser sausage we have been eating lately. I made this grilled cheese and kaiser sandwiches and grated it cold, straight from the fridge - it seemed less crumbly when it was cold and was easier. When it's room temp, it has a lovely, kind of crumbly texture but by the time I made The Kid his sandwich there wasn't much left and the only way I could make it spread far enough to make another sandwich was to grate it. I also managed to squeak out a grilled hirten and speck sandwich as well and the cheese was soooooo good with the speck. It melts so smoothly and gets nice and gooey and again, the mild flavour melds really nicely with the other flavours. I made mine with speck and a schmear of PC bacon marmalade...

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