Cheese / Reviews

Food Network Magazine: all-cheese issue

Let me start out saying, I don’t typically read Food Network Magazine. My friend alerted me to the fact that the most recent issue was all about cheese, so I picked up a copy and thought it was interesting enough to write about. As usual, my opinions are my own.

The Editor in Chief of Food Network Magazine, Maile Carpenter, wrote in her editor’s letter about how pulling together this all-cheese issue was a great opportunity to really focus on and think only about cheese:

But more importantly, she acknowledges just how much information and just how difficult it is to become a “bona fide cheese expert,” citing difficult questions from the American Cheese Society administered Certified Cheese Professional Exam; e.g. “What is the optimal temperature range to maintain the cold chain while cheese product is in transit?”

I will say that there isn’t quite as much information about “artisan” cheese as I would have liked. Popular topics include: Pizza, grilled cheese, fondue, mac & cheese, and cheese boards. In addition, as you might expect, there is no shortage of cheese-inspired recipes from Food Network chefs.

Some of the articles I found particularly interesting:
Melting infographic

Just the Facts: Melting

This infographic answers the questions, which cheeses melt the best and how their texture changes. It breaks cheese into three categories: creamy melters, stretchy melters and non-melters. Non-melters, like feta and ricotta soften, but their shape stays the same.

Can you dip it in cheese? Fondue foods

Can you dip it in cheese?

Food Network chefs dipped what they could in hot melted cheese and came up with a great list of food to eat with fondue. Some of the most interesting items they came up with: popcorn, iceberg lettuce, corn on the cob and candied walnuts.

On the Board: Cheeseboard Ideas

On Board: Step up your cheese plates with these themed combos

Lists several great ideas for cheese boards. Although I’m not entirely comfortable with the category called “Fancy Cheese,” the author did a great job of arranging cheese plates for different settings--with selections for cheese plates that pair well with beer and wine, as well as, some easily accessible “grocery store” cheeses.

Wrapping up

The cheese issue of Food Network Magazine is really great if you’re looking for ways to eat more cheese. I must say, the advertisements are kind of hilarious. In particular, there is a car insurance ad that reads, “certain foods take years to mature,” next to a picture of some artisan cheese; and then, goes on to say, “fortunately, it only takes 15 minutes to see how much you could save with [us].” Second, there is a cat food ad that reads “an entree with aged cheddar that pleases the toughest of critics.” And, what is more, there is a coupon for a free cheese board when you send in three proofs of purchase. I work in advertising, so I “get it,” but I also think it’s a bit silly.

This issue was in stores until recently, but I’m not sure for how much longer. If you can’t find it you can can always look on their website or find a digital copy on Google Play or Apple Newsstand.