Some Like it Hot: Triple Creme Cheese Laughs at "Mild"
As Marilyn Monroe demonstrated in a plunging neckline and a shimmy, some like it hot. Triple cremes do too.
Triple creme cheese loves heat.
While it's long been thought that the ideal pairing for a cheese as seemingly rich as cultured butter is Champagne, triple creme cheese has broad pairing abilities. Cloaked in a white bloomy-rind jacket with a creamy paste, triples are friendly. Open. Undiscriminating in pairing sessions. They like to play with others.
They snuggle up to what others fear being sat next to on a cheese plate.
Bring on the pepper jellies and spice.
If you're someone that laughs when someone asks you if you want your curry "mild," this is your pairing.
What is a triple creme? Some might say heaven. Others might say delicious. Both are correct. More specifically...
A triple creme is a cheese whose butterfat content is 75%. Never fear, this is the percentage of fat in dry matter, meaning that because triples are so young and full of whey, which the FDA doesn't measure, the butterfat is actually lower than it sounds. Read more here.
Because it's so soft and creamy and rich, the butterfat in a triple creme wraps itself around piquant flavors, soothing any abrasive notes, and snuggles up to heat like a toddler does a blankie.
You know what cheese doesn't do this? A blue cheese. Fair warning.
As the butterfat assuages the spiciness, it is also highlights other nuances in what it's paired with. Blackberry and pepper? Expect a light berrylicious hit. Classic pepper jelly? You're about to marry chile to sugar to butter. Mostarda? Brace yourself.
I adore triples and sparkling or triples and a Belgian double. But when I want to try something different, I remember that some like it hot.
The beautiful triple featured above is Ragged Point from Stepladder Creamery, a new California dairy that's already captured my heart. Never becoming oozy, It turns more buttery and sweet with age. Some of my favorite spicy picks paired with this triple are below! In no particular order.
Pepper Jellies & Spice
Mousquetaire Black Cherry & Espelette Jam: A classic pairing for the region's Basque sheep's milk wheel, I like to drizzle a bit of this back cherry and pepper jam over my favorite butterbombs.
Bonnie's Jams Red Pepper Jelly: Clean and classic. If you like it super hot, try their blackberry pepper jelly- but pair lightly, it goes far (a dollop was bit too strong for my mild tastebuds). My favorite Bonnie's is their tried and true southern staple, red pepper jelly. Beautiful. Side note- their Raspberry Lime Rickey was amazing with Ragged Point.
Grace & I Chipotle Carrots & Ghost Pepper Jelly: Brined carrots with heat. Layer textures by adding a crunch to your creamy cheese. Ghost Pepper Jelly is great, and... as hot as it sounds.
Mostarda Mediterranea: Italian candied fruit plus mustard oil creates a fierce pairing happily countered with a triple or cheddar. Serve with ciabatta or a rustic baguette.
KL Keller Basque Pepper Honey: As evidenced with this and the first pick, the Basque region can take a little heat. Wonderful with cheese that tastes like butter, and also good in a grilled cheese sandwich.
Thank you for the samples, Bonnie's Jams!