Today we’re meeting for a workshop cheese making & stroopwafel baking. We’ll be visiting two cities, famous for cheese, syrup waffles and other regional, artisanal products. Outside it’s bitterly cold. Fortunately we can warm ourselves. It’s the people we meet and the food we eat that makes us feel warm inside.
How do you recognise a good Gouda farmers cheese? There is Gouda factory cheese and farmer’s cheese. This is how you know the difference.
Gouda Farmer’s Cheese vs Factory Cheese
Some call it Guda, others call it Howda. The Gouda cheese is world-famous. There is a factory version and a handmade version. What are the differences? Factory cheese. It gives me the chills. Dutch farmer’s cheese definitely has my preference. Like with many crafts, the authentic cheese-making is an art. The main difference between a Dutch factory cheese and a farmer’s cheese is the milk used in the cheese making. Due to food safety requirements cheese factories use pasteurised milk. The cheese farmer makes the farmhouse cheese from very, very fresh milk. Early morning the dairy farmer collects the milk from the cow and immediately uses it for cheese making. A real – Gouda- farmer’s cheese is made from raw, non- pasteurised milk. Some cheese farmers choose to heat the milk slightly to make sure their cheeses maintain the unique characteristics of the farm, but also have a more uniform taste.
Pure Taste of Gouda Farmers Cheese
Every Gouda farmers cheese has an unique taste. Multiple aspects influence the taste of the typical Dutch hard cheese. The milk obtains its taste from the grass the cows eat, the area they live in. Gouda cheese is not made in Gouda city, but in the surroundings. Besides the grass of the pastures, the cows eat different herbs. The slightest climate difference in the Dutch countryside effects the taste of the cheese. Other than the milk, every cheese maker has a different recipe. After the cheese making the cheese farmer let’s the cheese ripen. Where the cheese ripening takes place and for how long also makes a difference to the taste of the delicious Dutch cheese.
Gouda cheese labels and stamps
Cheese makers all around the world can produce and sell Gouda cheese. Only in 2010 the term cheese made in Holland received a protected EU status. Only Gouda cheese made from 100% Dutch milk produced by Dutch cows, following a Dutch recipe & ripened according to Dutch standard can be called ‘Gouda Holland Cheese‘. You can recognise this cheese from the stamp.
Did you know you can also see the difference between a Gouda farmers cheese and a factory cheese from the stamp? The stamp on a Gouda factory cheese is round, whereas the stamp on a Gouda farmer’s cheese has the shape of a barrel. The stamp of a farmer’s cheese tells you if the cheese is made from raw milk or warmed ( thermerised) milk.
Soon on Verita’s Visit Holland: Cheese cities in the Green Heart of Holland
In the surroundings of Gouda, in the midst of the Dutch countryside, a cheese maker rises early in the morning. She makes her Holland farmer’s cheese, the authentic Gouda, from fresh milk. She pours the milk in a cheese vat, adds some special ingredients and the magic begins…