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What Is The Deal With All The Difference Cheese In France?

I’ve been back stateside for a few weeks now and am reminiscing about the cheeses in France. It wasn’t until this trip that I started to wonder about how on earth there are so many different kinds of cheese in France. So I did a bit of research.

Cheeses in France are named after the region they are made. So Brie comes from the town of Brie and Camembert from the town of Camembert.

I like cheese. Okay, so I love it! But I never thought I’d find myself googling ‘the history of french cheeses’. Turns out the reason for so many different cheeses is quite simple. It all boils down to one simple idea- the creativity and know-how of different people.

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History of Cheese

If cheese were invented today for the first time, I’m sure there wouldn’t be as many variations. We are all so connected that we would just pass along the recipe for cheese to each other and then go to Target to buy the ingredients.

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But when cheese was first invented, people didn’t have thermometers to measure the heat of the milk, or Targets to buy the exact same milk that is shipped nationally. As a result, cheeses from different regions vary.

Here’s some info about what makes cheeses different from each other:

“Variations in terms of temperature and heating of the milk, choice of ferment, cutting of the curd, size of the grains, mixing, heating, pressing time and intensity, placing in brine, washing or brushing of the rind, degree of humidity and temperature of the cheese maturation caves. It is the combination of these different elements that results in the extraordinary diversity of cheeses made in France.”

Fascinating!