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Identify this cheese!

I was picking at some leftovers from a very expensive caterer's spread today and there was this fabulous cheese that I'd never tried before, sandwiched with prosciutto slices in little white baguettes.

Help me identify this cheese! It was a clean white colour; rindless; had a similar texture to mozzarella but was definitely less dense; and had the unmistakable tang of a goat's cheese.

Name that cheese.

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  1. Hmm, there is a goat cheddar cheese. Can you call the caterer and ask?

    1. There are goat mozzarella cheeses out there or could be a blend (cow-goat).

      1. This summer, we made several trips to Marin county, California. I did have several softer, Brie type cheeses made from goat's milk, and boy was it good. I am under the impression that goat milk can also be made into a firmer, slicing and melting cheese. I am trying to remember, but am not sure if we had one of those firmer cheeses, and I surly do not know their names.

        However, there are several places that specialize in goat cheese: Cowgirl Creamery, Rouge et Noir, and Laura Chenel. Contact these places first. If you still cannot figure it out, give a call to The Cheese Board in Berkeley; the staff there are the most knowledgeable when it comes to cheese.

        3 Replies
        1. re: jerry i h

          Just a note: Rouge et Noir does not specialize in goat cheese. I don't think they even make a goat cheese.

          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            Marin French Cheese (Rouge et Noir) does not make goat cheese. They make three cow's-milk cheeses: schloss, "breakfast cheese," and one packaged as both "Brie" and "Camembert." The latter is also sold in several flavored (pesto, jalapeno, etc.) variations.

          2. re: jerry i h

            Point Reyes makes great goat cheese....or is it blue cheese..or both?

            1. It could be provolone (the Italian kind, not the stuff you get at sub shops). It is sort of mozzarella-ish in texture and the taste is a little bit like a goat cheese even though it isn't one.

              1. i agree with babette feasts. . .probably a mozarella di bufala.

                1 Reply
                1. re: makemestupid

                  Guys - I know what buffalo mozzarella tastes like and would not be posting a mystery cheese challenge if confronted with it! Give me some credit...

                2. I would guess manouri. It is made from sheep or goat. It does not have a rind. Like mozzarella, it has a milkly consistency and is not very salty.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: smudgy

                    Except manouri's denser than mozzarella.

                    1. re: Robert Lauriston

                      this is totally subjective and speculative... but sliced thin and since manouri can taste less fatty, it might seem lighter

                  2. Maybe, just maybe, imported ricotta salata made with part goat milk. If this cheese is sliced thinly and left at room temperature, it will take on the consistency of a mozzarella, slightly. http://www.swarthmore.coop/media/imag...

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: Cheese Boy

                      I've done a bit more research - ricotta salata is sheep's milk, right? I think this is it. Well done! Thanks all for gallant contributions.

                      1. re: frenetica

                        Ricotta salata's most often made from cow's milk, sometimes sheep or goat.

                        Manouri's basically the same type of cheese and it's made from sheep's milk.

                        1. re: frenetica

                          Yes, it's sheep's milk. Before buying *any* ricotta salata, be sure to ask for a taste. There are many very over-salted ones out there. This cheese does have a 'tang' to it when properly aged [even with sheep's milk]. http://www.murrayscheese.com/product_...

                          1. re: Cheese Boy

                            Spongy and smooth, Ricotta Salata is a rindless cheese made from lightly salted sheep's milk curd that is pressed and dried, then aged for at least three months. Supple in texture and mild in taste, Ricotta Salata is (despite its name) not at all overly salty or "sheepy." Instead, it boasts a mellow blend of nutty, milky and sweet flavors, which along with consistency afford the cheese an impressive versatility in the kitchen.

                            1. re: Jimbosox04

                              Ricotta Salata, as its name implies is *salty*. Salted ricotta, loosely translated. Depending on the region of origin, this cheese CAN BE, and many times IS, over-salted for most palettes. It's been my experience *many* times. Take my word for it. Always ask for a taste before buying. It avoids disappointments later.

                              1. re: Cheese Boy

                                I am not saying that it ISN'T or CAN'T BE salty. Just stating that the saltiness that is implied with its name is usually mild and named as so due to its aging process. A good Salata should come from the Sicilian region of Italy and IS but not ALWAYS lightly salted. Cheese Boy -- Your title still reigns -- CHEERS !!

                          2. re: frenetica

                            I find that sheep's milk cheeses are "fluffier" than comparable cow's or goat milk cheeses. Something about the different milk proteins gives them a distinctive texture. I would keep manouri in mind as a possibility -- it's a very delicious cheese, one of my favorites.

                        2. burrata? it's similar to mozarrella, though much softer, and is often paired with proscuitto.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: amandine

                            Oh, I just looked this up and saw a very evocative photo of the cheese being pulled apart, and it looks just like the cheese I ate. I was beginning to have my doubts about the ricotta salata when I read about it being "crumbled" over things - this cheese definitely doesn't crumble. Will have to go buy myself some burrata - thanks Amandine.

                            1. re: frenetica

                              you're welcome. I had my first taste at my favorite restaurant in L.A.... it was an appetizer with 2 thick slices of toasted rustic bread, several slices of proscuitto, microgreens, and the heavenly burrata, and you put it together yourself. I haven't had burrata since then, but you can be sure it's been on my mind! By all means let me know if it really was burrata you had!

                          2. could it be Casera Mexican cheese? It is clean white, not off white like mozzarella, and has a bit of a squeaky texture, not too salty....mild flavor like ricotta, but with a smooth texture. It slices fairly well, and has a medium soft texture.

                            1. There's a local sheep cheese guy who makes one he calls "Snow Road" that matches. See http://www.artisancheese.ca/ and scroll down.

                              Not that I think that was what you had.

                              1. My guess is ricotta salata