Raw milk cheese.

Bonjour,

As you know, I’m a big fan of cheese. Real cheese, which to me (and to many other French people) means raw milk cheese. What a relief when Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) lifted the ban on some raw milk cheeses in 2015! I could finally enjoy the cheese I love again and recommend it to my clients as one of the most delicious ways to reclaim their health.

Raw milk cheeses

Raw milk cheeses… and red wine!

Raw milk cheese suffered from a very bad reputation in our bacteria phobic modern society for decades to a point where all unpasteurised milk products were forbidden in many countries such as New Zealand or Australia.  It is fair to say that this safety measure helped stopped very dangerous infectious diseases such as tuberculosis and is still totally valid to protect the immune system of pregnant women, elderly people or young kids.

The issue, however, is that while pasteurisation destroys bad bacteria that could cause harm, it also kills all good bacteria or probiotics (see my article Be Stronger With Probiotics), critical for our body to function properly and to maintain a strong immune system.

Now that gut health (see my article Good Health Starts With Gut Health) is finally recognised as one of the essential conditions for good health (mental health included), enjoying some raw milk cheese is one delicious way of making sure you have your daily intake of friendly bacteria.

Why the French love raw milk cheese.

The French eat most of their naturally fermented cheeses from raw unpasteurised milk.  Made with milk coming from properly raised grass-fed animals (goats or cows), this beautiful cheese:

  • contains protective CLA and good fats (just like grass-fed butter or creme fraiche);
  • is packed with calcium, protein, rich in healing fats and, very important, is an excellent digestive aid; and
  • is bursting with probiotic activity, keeping pathogens at bay, guarding against infectious illness, and aiding in the fullest possible digestion of all food we consume; and

Last but not least, these friendly bacteria play a major role in developing texture, aroma and taste of the best cheeses on earth…

“Perhaps this is why so many traditional societies value fermented milk products for their health promoting properties and insist on giving them to the sick, the aged and nursing mothers”, as nutrition researcher and Weston A. Price Foundation co-founder Sally Fallon explains.

My 3 favourite raw milk cheeses.

Reblochon. I’m a big fan of its very soft texture, its nutty taste and even its firm orange skin (I eat it all!). Delicious as is, it is also just perfect melting as you can find it in the very popular dish from Savoie (French Alps) called Tartiflette, made of olive oil, garlic, creme fraiche, parsley, onions, potatoes, pancetta and bacon. Served with a green salad, the Tartiflette is the perfect dish for the winter months.

Here’s the quick and easy recipe below:

Raw milk Saint Nectaire purple wild figs.

Raw milk Saint Nectaire purple wild figs.

Saint Nectaire. One of the most delicious French cheeses from the region I come from, Auvergne. I would literally die for a piece of Saint Nectaire, made with the milk from cows that spend months in pristine mountains. I love its smell, its nutty taste, its grey skin… Give me some, now!

raw milk cheese

Roquefort, yes please!

Roquefort. The best blue cheese ever! Its blue/grey mould, moist yet hard texture and very strong flavour give the Roquefort its very assertive personality. You can use it in sauces for pasta, soups or meat dishes, for salad or simply on a piece of wholemeal bread with some butter. Delicious!

Survival guide if you can’t find raw milk cheese.

What to do if you crave cheese but can’t find raw milk cheese…

  • Look at the labels: only buy if there aren’t any other ingredients than milk, culture, rennin and salt. Simple.
  • Please stay away from so-called low-cholesterol cheese made with vegetable oils and likely to contain trans fats.
  • Processed cheese also should be avoided at all costs for the same reasons.They are highly processed and are everything –bad- but cheese.

Now, sit back, relax and enjoy your favourite raw milk cheese with a glass of your favourite red wine… Heaven!

Have a beautiful end of the week.

Yves

 

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