You know the holiday season has arrived in France once you see kiosks ladling steaming vin chaud into small foam cups, street vendors selling oysters (sizes 2, 3 or 5!) and fromageries showcasing small stacks of Mont d’Or cheese. For some unknown and unacceptable reason, I didn’t get a chance to have any Mont d’Or last holiday season, so as soon as I saw the first containers a few weeks ago, I snatched one up for a Sunday dinner.
Sold between September and May, Mont d’Or is a seasonal cheese made from cow’s milk and produced in France or Switzerland. Ripened in spruce wood, you eat this gooey, buttery cheese fondue-style and pair it with potatoes, veggies or just a good old crusty baguette.
Mont d’Or is probably hard to find outside of Europe, but in case you’re lucky enough to come across it, here’s a simple recipe. And you’ll have to excuse the crappy photos I have here. I took some quickly in the evening and since I had a guest staying with us, I didn’t exactly want to launch a full-on photo shoot in front of him…and because I just kind of wanted to stuff my face with cheese already.
Baked Mont d’Or
1 container of Mont d’Or cheese
1/2 cup of white wine
4 to 5 cloves of garlic, sliced thin
1 sprig of rosemary cut into short lengths
1 baguette and/or potatoes
– Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius).
– Take the plastic wrapping around the Mont d’Or cheese off, and wrap the container securely in aluminum foil. I double-wrapped just in case. Don’t cover the top of the cheese with aluminum foil.
– Using a knife, make several slits in the cheese and insert the garlic slices and rosemary sprigs.
– Pour the white wine over the cheese and bake the cheese on top of a baking sheet for about 30 minutes until it’s bubbling and hot.
– Once the cheese is ready, serve with bread or potatoes. You can take the aluminum foil off…I just didn’t bother to in the below photo.
Mont d’Or Tips
– A small container of Mont d’Or will cost approximately 14 euros.
– When buying Mont d’Or, take a close look at the wooden container to see if there are metal staples and that the container’s not simply glued together. If it’s glued, the heat in the oven will melt it…and you’ll be eating glue and Mont d’Or.
– Be sure to mix the cheese with a spoon a bit before chowing down, as it’ll infuse the flavor of the garlic and rosemary even more.