15 Jun 2015

CHEESE OF THE WEEK: Besace Affine

Don't judge a cheese by its cover. This wonky goats' cheese coated in ash is not exactly a looker (my father-in-law described it as 'fish head' cheese) but it was the stand out fromage on my Christmas cheeseboard.

Made by a cooperative in Perigord in the Dordogne, the raw milk cheese is meant to look like a shepherd's sack and the name translates as 'old bag' in colloquial French.

It's an unfortunate moniker that really doesn't do this sweet, innocent cheese justice. Underneath that grey rind is an array of textures and flavours.

There's a wonderful gooey layer close to the surface, which has a gentle goaty kick, while the main paste is brilliant white with a dense fudgy texture and a sweet, buttery and herby flavour.
The paste becomes denser and creamier, almost gummy as it matures and the breakdown under the rind gets even goatier.

You can buy it from the Cheeseboard in Greenwich.

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