I decided to try some Macedonia Greek Kasseri Cheese today. I saw it while shopping at Michael-Angelo’s Market Place in Mississauga.
This is a Greek cheese made from ewe’s (female sheep) milk or a blend of sheep and goat milk. When blended, the cheese can contain no more than 20% goat’s milk by weight.
This cheese is semi-hard, mild, slightly salty with a faint buttery taste. It is pale yellow with no rind. It would make a nice table or snacking cheese. One website I researched referred to Kasseri as “Greek Mozzarella”. Evidently it is a good melting cheese and could be used on pizza, in sandwiches or with eggs. I have not experimented with that yet.
The mean composition of Kasseri is : moisture 42.2%, fat 25.2%, protein 25.8%, salt 3.1% and pH 5.7.
Kasseri is a PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) product. It is one of twenty Greek cheeses that has been certified by the European Union. PDO cheese must meet standards regarding the origin, the animals and the production methods.
Kasseri is consistantly rich since it is made only in the months when the milk is creamy and sweet. It is hand stretched, kneaded and put into special molds. The cheese rounds are aged in special rooms for six months. The flavor continues to develop and improve even after it has been packaged. Like most traditional Greek cheeses Kasseri is “organic” since it is produced from the milk of Sheep and Goats that graze in regions free from fertilizers, insecticides, and pesticides.
Kasseri is the cheese used in the famous Greek dish Saganaki in which cheese is fried then flambéed.
I liked this cheese. It is not the kind of cheese that makes me want to tell people they must try it. But it was pleasant, affordable and a bit different. I don’t know if I’ve ever had sheep’s milk cheese before. Maybe that was a first. I’m paying a lot more attention to the cheeses I encounter and trying to figure them out and understand them better. It seems every cheese has a story behind it and this one took me to Greece. Opa!
I LOVE Kasseri cheese. It’s especially good paired with sweet bread. The contrast in flavors is great.