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The Whole Foods Kosher kitchen

Cheese Cheese Cheese: Natural and Kosher. Oh, and Delicious!

Posted on 24th of June, 2011 by Lévana

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This morning I received a message from Chani Vogel, who with her husband Moshe manage Kosher and Natural Cheeses, requesting I sample some of  the cheeses from their line. Next thing I knew, when I got home a couple hours later, an enormous and gorgeous basket was waiting for me at my desk, which had the desk attendant scratching his head: “Seems to me it is not the time when you people get lots of gift baskets. Do you have more than one of those holidays a year?” he asked. Ha! no we don’t, but Moshe and Chani almost had him, and me, fooled: Sure did look like Purim: Just take a look!

I confess I didn’t heed my own customary urging to my readers and my demo students, which is to please please please NOT sample anything new and delicious when you are hungry. Instead I armed myself with a knife, ripped a few packages and started cutting slivers of everything. I went on a mini cheese rampage. Pretty soon I took out some good crackers, and for good measure, poured myself a glass of wine: This will just have to be dinner, I told myself most emphatically (I did keep this promise, so rah-rah!), not only for me, but for my husband, another  lover of the occasional cheese splurge: He had me cut his cheeses into small chunks for his salad-dinner, which I dressed in a Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette: Yum!

I am usually most weary of “assembled” cheeses (cheeses with additions to them) so I was all the more pleasantly surprised when I tasted the delicious Cranberry Pecan Chevre, and the Olive Cheddar (Any way they can correct the spelling on the label would be nice and professional: the correct way is Olive Cheddar, not Olives Cheddar). The plain cheddar is nice and strong, which is always a great plus with any cheese, as it means a little goes a long way, and you will use less of it. I might just use it this Sunday to make my famous Cheddar Dill Scones. Maybe they will come out with an extra strong cheddar too? There’s a tray of neatly packed assorted sliced cheeses: Cheddar, Mozarella, Kashkeval, Pepper Jack and Muenster. American cheese: Umm, sorry, this health nut just doesn’t do American cheese….. There’s a lot more in their line: the grated cheese melange is what I used on a homemade pizza this past Shavouos, and it was fabulous.

There’s another thing I loved about their line: Their packaging is a marvel: Eat what you can (OK, maybe a little less!) and zip up the rest of the package for the next treat, for maximum freshness. Lots of their cheeses come in chunks too, which is always my first choice, as in my opinion this is what keeps cheese freshest. Another great news is, all cheeses in their line are natural and rennet-free, and are minimally processed.

Any day now, Moshe and Chani will be adding to their line those harder-to-find cheeses we are all pining for: Brie, Bleu, Camembert. I’ll bet they’ll make lots of people happy! Meanwhile, keep smiling and say CHEESE!

Filed under: Goat Cheese Recipes, Kosher Cheeses, Kosher Recipes, Natural and Kosher Recipes, Natural Cheeses Recipes, Natural Kosher Cheeses Recipes, Scones Recipes, Stories

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13 Questions

  1. Chani Vogel, on Said:

    Levana, how about a cooking class with our cheeses?? If we partner up on it, I will have no choice but to taste the blue cheese… But you will have to taste ours,,
    How about nine days time? (I will be away for July)

    Reply
  2. Elisheva, on Said:

    I am not as an esteemed chef as you, rather just an amateur food blogger, but I was also put to the same test by N&K! It was a lot of fun to sample the cheeses & make recipes!!

    Reply
    • Lévana, on Said:

      Hey hey hey Elisheva don’t deprecate your talents: Let’s just get cookin’!

  3. Lévana, on Said:

    Oh come on Chani! How brave do you need to be? Taste that Bleu de Bresse I tell you! it’s the greatest.

    Reply
  4. Chani Vogel, on Said:

    Hi Levana,
    Great news!! After long and hard work, between no compromises on quality, and taste, and companies ready to work with the cholov yisroel issues,,,,, WE ARE FINALLY GETTING our brie and camembert cheeses!!! We are very excited! It should be hitting the shelves in about two weeks!! Stay tuned!

    Just to clarify, Brigitte Mizrahi, a French Born Jewish lady is the owner of Natural and Kosher cheese. She has poured her life into the company to make it the success it is.

    OH, and one more thing. There is only one blue cheese that is authentic. It goes by the name of “Danablue” We do have our own cholov yisroel Danablue cheese. IF u have bought it in the stores it is likely the one that we import, only because there is no other one that we know of that is cholov yisroel on the market.

    Reply
    • Lévana, on Said:

      Chani, it really is great news! We will let everyone know!
      The best blue cheese, and the most authentic one, is the French “Bleu de Bresse” On this there will be no argument: Remember I am a Frenchie via Casablanca! I recently bought a wheel in Israel: There’s no one tastes it that simply doesn’t Chalish. All other blues are OK, but they have this objectionable soapy aftertaste. by contrast the Bleu de Bresse is strong and sweet at the same time: Heavenly…. Possibly my great favorite, maybe with Manchego, another one I’m crazy about. I recently received a 7-pound wheel of Manchego for my birthday. I nearly fainted, but instead I quickly recovered and I believe I did the right thing: Split it in 8 parts, and froze all of them. It freezes perfectly. There’s nothing I don’t do with it: Crepes, omelettes, scones, pasta, frittata.

  5. Mendy Lipszyc, on Said:

    Levana, Tenuva makes a Kashkaval thats available in the us, I have gotten Brie in pomegranate, and N & K makes a camembert under their Les Petit Line which is sadly not Cholov yisroel.

    Now me I am looking for Rennet & cultures that are cholov yisroel so that I can try making my own cheeses :-)

    Reply
    • Lévana, on Said:

      Hi Mendy, Wow, very ambitious of you to attempt making your own cheeses. I think rennet and cultures should be relatively easy to find. When you do, please make us some exciting cheeses! Yes it’s a shame Les Petites Fermieres are not Chalav Israel!

    • Dovid Wheeler, on Said:

      BS”D

      Hello Mendy
      I carry Chalav Yisrael Cultures as well as Parve Rennet Powder (3x strength) I also carry Parve Penicillin Camden if you want to make a chalav yisrael camembert.

      I have certificates of Kashrut from the certification agency as well as from Rabbinut of Israel.

      I have just opened my new site http://www.koshercurds.com this site is designed for the Yid that wants to make Kosher Artisan Cheese at home.

      I live in Israel and would love to hear from you.

      Just as a side note:
      Chalav Yisrael cultures placed inside Chalav Stam will render the final product Chalav Stam. Please make sure to use Chalav Yisrael milk as well.

      Hope that you and everybody that reads this will have a wonderful Chag Pesach 5774 and that you will receive the Torah B’simcha on Shavous.

      Rabbi Dovid Wheeler
      David’s Naturals
      PO Box 4802
      Qatzrin, 1290000
      ISRAEL
      US:646-770-0259