Sunday, 14 February 2010

Nothing says "I love you" like cheese...

Happy Valentine's Day! Now - what do you give someone who really doesn't care for chocolate? Heart-shaped cheeses.

The black waxed cheese is a Godminster cheddar, a raw milk, organic cheese made in the traditional way in Somerset. The bloomy white cheese is coeur de Neufchatel, a raw milk soft cheese made in the traditional way in France. We will enjoy these with some nice wine, a few crackers and possible some lovely fig and fennel paste that I have been saving for a special occasion.

I am extremely lucky to have access to unpasteurised cheeses. The range of flavours and textures that are available in unpasteurised, artisan cheeses just can't be beaten, but it is an experience that is denied to a lot of people. I'm pretty sure you can't get unpasteurised cheeses in the US. In Australia, you can apply for a licence to import them but you can't produce them for sale. Crazy. Food Standards Australia is looking at a proposal to change the standards for cheese in Australia, and is seeking public submissions. So I would urge any Australians who would like a chance to buy a locally produced raw milk cheese, and to continue to enjoy imported cheeses, to join cheese guru Will Studd (and, in fact, my mother, who gave me the heads up on this) and have a look at what is being proposed and let Food Standards Australia know that these cheesemaking traditions are important and that the products are both delicious and safe.

It's almost time for me to get off my soapbox... but there is one more thing!

You may have noticed that today's photograph has a watermark on it. I'll be experimenting with it a bit until I get one I am happy with. As far as I know, I haven't had any content pinched from my site, but I do know a lot of people who have. I was looking for a recipe online the other day and saw the same picture of a dish, and the identical recipe, reproduced without attribution in about 1o different places. This is not OK. This is a theft of intellectual property. The only recipes I publish on this site are the ones that I developed. The only pictures I use are the ones that either Paul or I took. This is a very useful article on some ways to combat content theft but I am still trying to figure out which ones I will adopt. It is a sad state of affairs, but it does seem that anyone who puts any effort into their blogs will at some point be ripped off by someone who is too lazy to do their own work. Please help fight content theft.

... and I'm done. I'll have a post involving more food and less politics soon, I swear!

23 comments:

Carly Findlay said...

Agreed 500%
I had a convo at work last week where I said if a boy gave me chocolate and another gave me cheese, I'd date the one with the cheese.

Cheese is the way to my heart!
Glad we have that in common.

Debinhawaii said...

Cheese is certainly a great way to say I love you (as is soup--at least according to my post tomorrow!) lol!
The cheeses both sound wonderful.

Foodycat said...

Carly - cheese is wonderful. I think I could become vegetarian, but cheese is so addictive I couldn't do vegan.

Deb - I look forward to your soup! It sounds intriguing.

I Poderi del Sole said...

And both choices are fantastic with wine.
My kind of Valentine.

grace said...

wait. there are people who don't care for chocolate? gadzooks!
well, i suppose cheese is the next best thing, heart-shaped cheese in particular.
and good for you--don't abide the stealing of your awesome pictures!

Foodycat said...

I poderi - yes! Going nicely with wine is an advantage.

Grace - he is a strange man, but I am fond of him!

Luciana said...

Hello this cheese is amazing...a kiss Luciana
http://daldolcealsalato.myblog.it/

George Gaston said...

There is nothing better than a rich delicious cheese. Second to chocolate, I am a cheese-a-holic. I love soft cheese, I love hard cheese, I love creamy double-cream cheeses ~ I have never met a cheese I did not love.

This would be a terrific cheese course to my "candlelight" dinner I posted...

You are so lucky to live in an area where cheese is still an art to the way it is made!

C said...

I guess many of us in the UK take access to good cheese for granted. We're very lucky!

I really must look into watermarking my photos, although I'm not aware of my posts/photos being used elsewhere it is extremely frustrating that this is happening to people who put so much time and effort into their blogs.

Foodycat said...

Luciana - thanks for visiting my blog! Un bacio!

George - it would be a wonderful cheese course for that lovely menu.

C - turns out that watermarking isn't difficult, just takes a bit of time.

A Year on the Grill said...

I am always surprised to see those recipe crooks out in the blog world. i mean really why bother. i try to only find the people who cook what they blog about.

And you are right about cheese... raw milk cheese is wonderful and should be legal and easier to find

Chef Aimee said...

I am with you - cheese is a great way to express love! And I am not shy about expressing my love of cheese! :) Happy Valentine's Day!

HH said...

That Cheese looks great FC, what a lovely Valentine's! Hope it was delicious.

It is terrible about the theft, the historian in me couldn't but reference everything I use! I don't think very many people read my blog really, and if they did, there is nothing worth stealing!

mscrankypants said...

Your photos are always enticing and beautiful and protecting them is a sound thing (unfortunately).

I would only ever be a tiny percentage of an artisan cheese market here, but I support the concept strongly -- humans survived for how many thousand years with traditional cheesemaking practices?! Thanks for the link to take action.

The Cat's Mother said...

Cheese for Valentine's Day - what a great idea!

Lucky I got the email from Black Pearl Epicure who have supported the raw milk cheese case for some time.

My argument (other than raw milk cheeses being part of my culinary heritage) is that it assumes people are dumb and have to be protected. You don't see pregnant women eating soft cheese these days. They have heard the message they may be at increased risk. Why should the rest of us miss out?

Foodycat said...

Dave - I know, it seems so pointless, doesn't it?

Aimee - I only realised yesterday that I didn't have a cheese tag on my blog! What a mistake!

HH - strangely, we didn't get around to eating the cheese after I photographed it! We were eating too many other things.

Cranky - lots of small percentages is how grassroots actions work!

Mother - too true. And because it is smaller producers, it is much more traceable and more able to be regulated.

Laurie said...

I would much rather have cheese than chocolate!!! The only place I have found unpasteurized cheese for sale is at the Farmers' Markets I visit in Vermont. SOOO good.

The regs in my state are ridiculous. I belong to a raw milk coop and our farmer can sell milk to us (with a big scary warning about how we're taking chances with our lives), but he can't sell us cream, butter or cheese.

The heads up on content theft was scary. I went to the link and printed the article so I can check this out further tomorrow. Alot of bloggers I know put their name in the bottom corner. I know you can do this with photoshop, but *sigh* it's one more time consuming step.

Thank you for welcoming me back...

Beatrice said...

Hmm. I just tried Copyscape and I am not impressed -- it came up with a link to a food carnival I recently contributed to, but nothing else. I've done other food carnivals, and I also know that there are a couple of sites that have used my photos, with permission (and a link back to me). So far, I haven't run across anyone using my stuff without permission (knock wood).

As for the cheese -- it seems silly to let people import it, but not make it locally. (If anything, you'd think it would be the opposite!)

Foodycat said...

Laurie - at least you can get the raw milk!

Beatrice - completely mad. Why would a cheese flown from France be safer than a cheese made in Bendigo?

Shirley Blake said...

Never met a cheese I didn't like! And I think I would really like one that is heart-shaped...

kat said...

I've had some of my stuff taken & it is so frustrating. Luckily I was able to stop most of the people. As for the cheese we "can't" get raw cheese here in the US but at our farmer's market you can buy it to use as "bait"

Foodycat said...

Shirley - I know, the shape makes it taste better!

Kat - ah, bait! How stupid that you have to be so sneaky.

Johanna said...

What a great idea to have heart shapes cheeses! who needs chocolate anyway??? I should start watermarking my pictures too, when I figure out how...

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