A Cheese Journey

To Mary Quicke's

October is glorious. The trees are in their autumn party clothes, hedges and orchards dripping with fruit... --Mary's Dairy Diary

For years, I have followed Mary's online diary and shared her cheese with friends -- pairing it with apples, chutneys, whisky. In autumn, I flew to England with a group of cheese pilgrims to meet her.

We spent the morning in her fields and in her make room...

...learning how traditional cheddar is made.

You want curds the size of "the half moon of a fingernail."

The curds are packed into slabs, then fed through a mill -- like a sausage grinder.

The October milk is rich and balanced....That's lucky, as we are now making a lot of the cheese that will sit on Christmas cheeseboards next year. --Mary's Diary

Once the curds are packed into forms and pressed, they are wrapped in muslin and smeared with lard.

They wait like wallflowers, undisturbed for months except when they are turned.

While the cheeses age, Mary tends to the fields -- they've been in her family for 450 years.

The pastures are growing apace, in the little autumn peak of growth. The plants have more moisture, and have given up sex, the drive to make seed. --Mary's Diary

Good pasture = rich milk

Perfect for making cream-filled Berry Pavlova...or cheese.

The Board

Quicke's Mature Quicke's Vintage (2 yr) Oak Smoked Elderflower Cheddar Quicke's Goat Milk Ewe's Milk

After lunch, we walk the garden.

And meet daughter Janie, 15th generation on this land.

Quicke's Traditional

Handmade Family-run Slowly matured Award-winning

Special thanks to Mary Quicke. (Follow her diary.) And deep gratitude to Anna Juhl of www.cheesejourneys.com #CheeseJourneys2015 #food #travel #england #cheese #liveauthentic #stellerfall

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  • michelle_oben

    I immediately went through your story as soon as I saw the title. "A Cheese Journey"? Yes. Please.

  • mmefromage

    @michelle_oben Yay! Thanks for the comment. I'm so glad to hear that you're a dairy dreamer, too!

  • cheesesexdeath

    Wow this is The Secret Garden of cheese stories. Magnificent storytelling.

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