Well It has been quite a while since I have posted on this blog but I recently discovered the name of my favourite Turkish cheese or peynir. It's called sepet peyniri. Translated it is actually basket cheese and man alive is it ever tasty! Depending on what I search I've come up with Arabia and Italy for origin points but I imagine that a lot of European countries have their own unique version of basket cheese.
Traditionally, basket cheese was made from cow goat or sheep's milk or a mix of all of them. The cheese was then pressed into, you guessed it, baskets. Because it took such a long time to dry the aged sepet ended up with a distinct flavour. Apparently now a-days sepet is often made in plastic containers which dry out quicker resulting in a loss of flavour. I don't know how Thunder, (our cheese guy) makes his, but it ends up in rounds about a foot across and 5 or 6 inches deep with a pattern of rectangles around the outside from whatever he aged it in.
This is a piece of cheese which we got from Thunder on Saturday. Its about the same hardness as medium cheddar in Canada. We usually buy Yarim Kilo or half a kilo of it because it makes good sandwich cheese. The cheese usually has a couple of centimeters of saltier, stronger cheese around the outside getting milder towards the middle.
Maybe I could get a recipe from Thunder.... Failing that at least there's a recipe in that link below!
Images from: http://www.cheesemaking.com/BasketChz.html
If you feel inclined to try it out let us know how it goes.
Afiyet Olsen! (enjoy your meal or bon appetit)