Cheese, Grommit, cheese!

cheese

Dear Cath,

I received a lovely hamper from Harrod’s last week* — a cheese gift set hamper! Really, this should be your hamper because you are cheese and I am chocolate, but I will do my best to share it with you via the blogisphere.

The hamper is everything you need for fancy cheese eating (or cheddar-only cheese eating ;)): olive oil crackers, two different types of olives, an onion relish, a cheese scoop (I didn’t even know such a thing existed!) and three serious-business (technical fromage terminology) cheese knives:

harrods-cheese-gift-set

The past couple of years I’ve mostly cut dairy out of my diet, but I thought getting this hamper was a perfect excuse to be momentarily adventurous with my cheese eating. A fromagey treat that would make me less scared of wooly looking cheese rounds that smell of feet.

Matteo and I headed to our local cheese monger (do you remember I.J. Mellis on Victoria St?) so that we could choose some cheeses that would show proper respect to the Harrods’ hamper.

i-j-mellis-cheese

It’s a lovely cool, bitty shop stacked full of cheese wheels. If I were a mouse, this is what heaven would look like:

edinburgh-cheese

From a previous stop to the cheese monger (I love that people still monger here!), we know we aren’t up to the task for enjoying kick-in-the-teeth pungent cheese. We looked for smoked cheeses or cheddars and kept it all Scottish. I wish I were brave enough to say we tried this Dorstone, but it’s the stuff of (cheese) nightmares in my book:

dorstone-cheese   

harrods-cheese

Instead we ended up with four wedges of fairly safe but incredibly tasty cheeses: a Scottish brie, Auld Reekie (yes, named for Edinburgh and indeed reekie), Orkney Grimbister that was a bit like Wensleydale (cheese, Grommit, cheese!) and my favourite, a smokey mature yellow cheese called Old Lochnagar.

Matt and I packed up our hamper and fancy cheese and headed to the Meadows for a wee picnic with friends:

picnic-meadoes

I felt rather unsophisticated as I didn’t know which knife to use for what and I ended up using the cheese scoop for our onion relish, but in the end it was all delicious.

cheese-knives

Might I recommend the Ornkey Grimbister and red onion relish on top of a dense olive oil cracker? Deeelicious!

cheese-pickle

We also had these olives to go with our cheese chomping. They are the closest thing that I’ve tasted since those beautiful olives we had in Italy last year (my, that does sound pretentious doesn’t it? I feel the cheese knives would approve).

harrods-olives

Because we won’t be eating much cheese here in the future (back to no dairy again once I finish that Old Lochnagar wedge sitting in the fridge), the cheese knives are coming home with me in August to be christened by you and Troy in your new house!

I’ve also googled cheese knives and can now instruct you that the cheese cleaver will be best for your mature cheddar predilections. So be ready in August with a mound of cheese. I can’t wait to eat some olives and cheddar with you on YOUR deck in YOUR house! Please, please, please take lots of pics — yes even ones full of moving boxes. I feel heart broken not being there with you — and not all the fancy cheese in the world can make up for that!

Love you like onion relish loves Wenslydale,

Lar

*p.s. Dear readers, this is not a sponsored post, but I was gifted the lovely hamper basket by a PR firm that works with Harrods. If you do like these hamper posts, I received a girly non-cheese hamper last year which you can read about here.


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11 Responses to “Cheese, Grommit, cheese!”

  1. MichelleK Says:

    I LOVE cheese!!!! I’m mostly a cheddar fan, but love brie, camembert and goats cheese too. And I love pecorino, use it almost always instead of parmesan. I’m not a huge fan of mouldy cheeses, unless it’s in a sauce.

    [Reply]

    AsianCajuns Lar Reply:

    Hi Michelle,

    Mouldy cheese in a sauce? I totally have to try that. I’ve melted a romano rind in a sauce before and felt very sophisticated until I decided my palette didn’t match my pretention. So glad you are a cheese lovely too (Cath, you are in good company!).

    xoxox,
    Lar

    [Reply]

    MichelleK Reply:

    You totally should! It dilutes the strong flavour. Start with melting a small amount of something fairly mild in a white sauce and taste before adding more cheese to get the flavour you like. I love making a cheese sauce along with some sweet-potato, turnip and chickpea fries as well as some veggies to dip in the sauce whenever I am in need of some comfort food but want to keep it fairly healthy.

    [Reply]

    AsianCajuns Lar Reply:

    Michelle, you are a genius! This all sounds amazing and would actually convince me to eat turnips (or “neeps” as they are known in these parts).
    xoxox,
    Lar

  2. Céline Says:

    I can’t remember seeing such a cheese hamper in France! This is beautiful and really tempting! I would love to have a cheese shop such as I.J Mellis near home to try the Dorstone (hey I’m French, I’m not afraid!) and to taste the onion relish and the olives! Lucky you!

    [Reply]

    AsianCajuns Lar Reply:

    Hi Céline!

    I so wish I could have shared this hamper with you! And I would have totally bought the Dorstone if you wanted some (though I’m still not sure I could work up the courage to eat it).

    Hope you and your beautiful family are doing well!

    xoxox,
    Lar

    [Reply]

  3. CurryLove Says:

    So… I’m very uncouth and don’t know….are you supposed to eat the moldy (mouldy) rind?? I can’t even do blue cheese because it grosses me out so much!

    Pics are adorable, as usual :)

    [Reply]

    AsianCajuns Lar Reply:

    CL, I am equally uncouth and don’t know at all, but shudder to think of biting into fuzzy bits (guuuugggh). Let’s agree that you don’t eat that bit ;D
    xoxox,
    Lar

    [Reply]

  4. Michelle Says:

    Like Wallace and Cath, “I’m just crackers about cheese!” Nice spread. I’d love them all too, including the stinky ones. My new favourite is Cambozola. :) Have a wonderful weekend!

    [Reply]

    AsianCajuns Lar Reply:

    Cambozola? I need you as much cheese guide, Michelle!
    xoxox,
    Lar

    [Reply]

  5. Ali Says:

    well, I am SO glad I impulse-bought a wedge of lovely blue Brie when I was doing the shopping this afternoon because I’m not sure I would’ve made it through this post without the promise of getting to eat actual real cheese after looking at all those photos!
    also, look at you in the sunshine wearing a perfect summery outfit as though you do it all the time! where are those shoes from? they look like my kinda thing (meaning I have ten similar pairs and need more)

    [Reply]

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