Veteran cheesemonger Patrick Ambrosio lifts the lid on Maroilles…
The people of Nord-Pas de Calais love their boldly flavoured beer, spirits and hearty, unfussy food. Equally bold are their cheeses, Maroilles being the jewel of the region. Created by a monk in the 10th century, production soon spread to local farms. When purchasing, seek a well-aged specimen and you will be rewarded with a slightly salty and aromatic paste, with notes of cured meats and mushroom. A bit stinky to be sure, but oh-so satisfying! Maroilles is also a key ingredient in the local dish flamiche, a baked cheese tart. Too bold for a pre-dinner cheeseboard, it is best served after the main course with your best red, or as a rustic lunch with a wheat or dark beer and charcuterie.
First printed in our sister publication France Today
Patrick Ambrosio is managing partner of the Village Cheese Merchant in Rockville Centre, NY. www.villagecheesemerchant.com