After numerous enthusiastic trips to the Fox Studios/Entertainment Quarter produce markets – where they have a most fantastic cheese stall – the tiny ends of once-adored cheeses were piling up in the fridge.
Just before regretfully throwing them away, a friend in Los Angeles pointed me to the concept of Fromage Fort.
For those who’ve never heard of it… are you sitting down? This will change your cheesey life.
Fromage Fort is the combination of all those cheese ends that you can no longer respectably serve on a platter into a cheese spread that’s got a great robust taste to it.
Here’s how it works:
In a food processor combine around 250 grams of cheese (after removing any rind and *ahem* mould), half a clove of garlic and as much white wine as you need.
You can add some fresh herbs that will suit the taste of your cheese collection, thyme’s pretty universal. Remember that cheese is an excellent intensifier of garlic, so if you’re not a fan you may wish to halve the amount (phffwoo, learnt that one the hard way). When combining you’ll start off needing around half a cup of wine, but this will increase depending on the hardness of the cheese.
That should make two ramekin-size pots, which means you can keep one for yourself and share the wealth with the other. I added a sprig of thyme to the top of mine to make it look prettier because I’m a nerd like that.
I got my original recipe from the Matt Bites Blog, where his entry covers what types of cheeses not to use (super soft and blue mostly) and where you really should draw the line on the mould issue. It’s a great blog to subscribe to, and his photography is excellent.
I recently got out the pot of Fromage Fort and spread it on a slab of lightly fried seed loaf and served it with a very simple pumpkin puree soup. It was a great Winter snack or light meal, and I look forward to hearing what inventive ways you apply the wonders of Fromage Fort.