Did you know?
Spring brings many things and Basket Cheese is one of the tastiest and most versatile offerings of the Spring. Carlino’s Basket Cheese is a variation of fresh ricotta. With Basket Cheese, the curds are carefully transferred into basket molds to drain and form. The cow’s milk used to make this cheese is whole, pasteurized milk which gives the cheese full notes of milky flavor.
Basket Cheese is similar to tofu, not only in its consistency, but also because both are great absorbers of flavor. Drizzle some Carlino’s 18 year Balsamic Vinegar over it and you’ll think you are in Modena. Or if you are in a Mediterranean mood, try it topped with any of Carlino’s Antipasto Bar offerings, especially our Champagne Olive Mix.
The very versatile Basket Cheese is excellent when batter-dipped and fried and served with anchovy butter and just as perfect when layered with tomatoes, basil and olive oil. Mr. Carlino prefers Basket Cheese sliced and drizzled with Extra Virgin Olive Oil…Carlino’s Extra Virgin Olive Oil that is!
Even though it lends itself to savory dishes, Basket Cheese is really known as a cheese that is used in dessert recipes. Our very own Executive Pastry Chef, Jessica Pachorkowsky Perez, uses Basket Cheese each year in making Carlino’s desserts, especially the award winning Italian Ricotta Cheesecake. Once you try Basket Cheese, you’ll agree that the possibilities are endless…as are most things associated with Spring!
Carlino’s Executive Cheese Specialist
Featured Cheese: Taleggio
April 1st, April Fool’s Day, leads us to choose the “April Fool-er Cheeses” as our featured cheese type. These are the washed-rind cheeses…the stinky cheeses. They fool you by taking two senses, that usually travel together, to different places…the nose to one place and the palate to somewhere else. They are called the “Stinky Cheeses” because that’s where they take the nose…but the palate heads to heaven because of the creamy, buttery flavor that it receives. The washed-rind cheeses also coat the throat with a lick of buttery-ness so they are the perfect cheeses for champagne bubbles to land on.
Carlino’s offers a variety of International washed-rind cheese but Italian Taleggio is the most popular. Taleggio is a cow’s milk cheese that is unpressed, supple and ripened for 40-80 days. Its paste is white and its taste is earthy and heavenly at the same time…no fooling!
Just Arrived – Black Truffle Pecorino Cheese
This rustic sheep’s milk cheese is infused not only with black truffle, but also Champignons mushrooms. Hailing from Northern Italy, it is pasteurized and aged for about 5 months, developing an intense and smokey flavor. This semi-soft cheese is an unusual and fabulous addition to any cheese board, salad or appetizer.
Cheese Goes With: Wine
Carlino’s is partnering with Penns Woods Winery of Chadds Ford, PA for Wine and Cheese Night, April 13th. Patty Church, our Cheese Specialist, and a representative from Penns Woods Winery will be sharing with us the wonderful pairings of artisan cheeses from Carlino’s and wines from Penns Woods Winery. This event will be held at Carlino’s in West Chester from 7:30pm – 9:30pm on Friday, April 13th. Email Nick@Carlinosmarket.com to reserve a spot.
Recipe: Irish Cream Chocolate & Basket Cheese Pudding
This adult pudding incorporates the lush milkiness of Basket Cheese with the eye-opening flavor of Bailey’s Irish Cream. The combination of dark chocolate together with finely ground coffee beans, creates an “over-21” and over-the-top dessert!
YIELD: 6 Servings
¾ cup of cream, for chocolate layer
1 cup of cream, for Basket Cheese layer
½ cup of dark chopped chocolate
4 oz. sugar
1 ¼ lb. Basket Cheese
¼ cup of Bailey’s Irish Cream Liqueur
1 ½ Tablespoon of finely ground coffee
Biscotti biscuits to serve with
This dessert is made of two layers.
For the chocolate layer: Heat ¾ cup of cream in a small sauce pan…bring to a boil and remove from heat. Add chopped chocolate and leave to melt…stir to smooth. Let this cool to room temperature.
For the Basket Cheese layer: Process the Basket Cheese, sugar, Bailey’s Irish Cream and ground coffee in a processor until smooth. Add 1 cup of cream and process until just combined. Divide this mixture among six 8oz. Ramekins.
Spoon the chocolate mixture over the Basket Cheese mixture and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Serve with biscotti and await the word “Bravo.”
Visit our Cheese Menu at CarlinosMarket.com
Schedule a consultation with our Cheese Specialist to find the answer to your cheese question by emailing us at Nick@carlinosmarket.com