Thursday, December 28, 2006

Have you tired...Manchego?

Yep, I'm back on the cheese wagon. Have you tried this cheese; Manchego? "It's Spain's most popular cheese and is made only on the plain of LaMancha from the milk of the Manchega sheep which graze on the shrubs and grasses of the Dahesa and produce a thick, aromatic milk that gives Manchego a unique and distinctive character. The "La Mancha"region is a vast high plateau, more than 600 meters above sea level, which extends from east to west and north to south, adjoining the provinces of Toledo, Cuenca, Ciudad Real and Albacete, all in the Castile-La Mancha Region southeast of Madrid." From the Iberian Foods website.

If you haven't had a chance to try it, please do, it's a delightful cheese with a mellow flavor, it has a dry texture much like Parmesan. I thought it tasted like a sharp Irish ceddar, but CB thought it tasted like Parmesan. It can be stored in the refrigerator in wax paper for up to two weeks. A recent recipe in the Everyday Food Magazine featured this delicious cheese.

Ham and Manchego Panini with Dipping Sauce

Serves 2; Prep time: 20 minutes; Total time: 20 minutes

4 slices country bread
4 ounces thinly sliced ham
2 ounces Manchego cheese, coarsely grated (1/2 cup)
4 tsp olive oil
3 tbs apricot jam
1 tbs Dijon mustard

Top each of 2 bread slices with ham, Manchego, and remaining slices. Brush tops of panini with 2 teaspoons oil.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat remaining oil over medium-low. Place panini in skillet, oiled side up. Cover; cook until golden brown and cheese has melted, 5 to 8 minutes per side, pressing down with a spatula 3 to 4 times during cooking.

Meanwhile, make dipping sauce: In a small bowl, mix together jam and Dijon. Serve panini with sauce on the side.


Anonymous said...

I have never tried this cheese, but I have heard about it a lot on the Food Network. I seem to associate manchego with Bobby Flay - perhaps it is something he uses a lot. Of course, I also associate the word 'poblano' with Flay.

wheresmymind said...

I'm a little hit or miss on Manchego...some times I dig...other times not *shrug*