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Goat cheese: learn how it’s made and some recipes to delight your guests

formaggio di capra
Table of Contents

The origins of goat cheese are as old as the breeding of goats themselves. The practice of making cheese from goat’s milk is believed to date back over 10,000 years, with the earliest evidence coming from the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

This ancient form of cheese-making quickly spread throughout the ancient world, thanks to goats’ ability to adapt to different climates and soils. Nomads and migratory peoples favored the spread of this cheese along trade routes, making it a staple in their diets.

Over the centuries, cheese has taken on multiple shapes and flavors, influenced by local traditions, production methods, and the types of goats raised.

Particularly in regions such as France and Greece, goat cheese has become synonymous with gastronomic excellence, with varieties such as Chèvre and Feta being prized around the world for their quality and distinctive flavor.

Today, goat cheese continues to be a popular choice for consumers, thanks to its versatility in cooking and its health benefits.

How is goat cheese made?

The production of goat cheese is a fascinating process that combines ancient traditions with modern cheese-making techniques. It all starts with milking the goats, preferably in the morning when the milk is fresh and plentiful.

The milk is then filtered and pasteurized to ensure food safety, eliminating pathogenic bacteria while maintaining nutritional characteristics. After pasteurization, rennet, an enzyme that coagulates milk by separating the whey from the curds, is added.

At this point, the curds are cut, stirred , and heated, a crucial step that affects the texture of the cheese. The curds are then transferred to moulds where the residual whey is drained, and the cheese begins to take shape.

Salting is the next step, essential for flavor and preservation. Finally, the cheese is matured in controlled environments, a process that can range from a few days to several months, depending on the type of cheese desired.

During curing, the cheese develops its unique flavor and texture, becoming the delicious product that many love and appreciate.

Nutritional benefits of goat cheese

The nutritional benefits of goat cheese are numerous, making this food an excellent addition to a balanced diet. Rich in high-quality protein, goat cheese provides all the essential amino acids needed for tissue building and repair in the body.

It is also a good source of calcium, which is important for bone and dental health, and vitamins such as vitamin A, which supports vision and the immune system, and B vitamins, which are crucial for energy metabolism.

Additionally, goat cheese contains medium-chain fats, which can be more easily digested and turned into energy than the long-chain fats found in cow’s milk.

This makes it an ideal choice for those who have difficulty digesting dairy. Goat cheese is also prized for its content of probiotics, beneficial microorganisms that promote a healthy balance of gut flora and can improve digestion and nutrient absorption.

Finally, for those who are mindful of their calorie intake, goat cheese tends to have a lower calorie content than some cow’s cheeses, making it a lighter but equally satisfying choice.

Goat Cheese Recipes

How to choose the right goat cheese

Choosing the right goat cheese is an art that requires attention to detail and an understanding of one’s taste preferences. First of all, consider where the cheese comes from – local or artisanal goat cheeses can offer unique flavors and increased freshness.

Texture is another important factor; Cheeses can range from soft and spreadable to hard and aged. If you’re new to goat cheese, you might want to start with softer, milder varieties, which are generally less intense.

For lovers of strong flavors, aged goat cheeses or cheeses with added herbs can be an excellent choice. Also, pay attention to seasonality: some goat cheeses are better at certain times of the year, based on the goats’ diet and production process.

Finally, don’t forget to taste before you buy if possible to ensure the cheese satisfies your palate. With these tips in mind, you’ll be well-equipped to select the cheese that best suits your dishes and special occasions.

Among the goat cheeses, we recommend the Robiola di Capra produced by For-Mac Milesi. Thanks to its maturation, this cheese takes on a unique and indistinguishable flavor. For-Mac Milesi’s Robiola di Capra stands out for its creamy and delicate texture, which blends harmoniously with the strong but balanced taste of goat’s milk.

Conquering the most demanding palates, this cheese represents the excellence of dairy craftsmanship. Perfect to enjoy on its own or accompanied by honey and fresh fruit, For-Mac Milesi’s Robiola di Capra is a must-see treat for cheese lovers.

Recipes with goat cheese

Here are three delicious goat cheese recipes that enhance its versatility and unique flavor:

  1. Goat cheese and spinach quiche: A shortcrust pastry base accommodates a creamy filling of goat cheese, sauteed fresh spinach, and beaten eggs. Topped with nutmeg and pepper, this savory pie is perfect as both a main course and an appetizer.
  2. Bruschetta with goat cheese and sun-dried tomatoes: Slices of toasted homemade bread are spread with soft goat cheese and garnished with sun-dried tomatoes in oil and fresh basil. A drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkling of oregano complete these bruschettas, ideal for a summer aperitif.
  3. Goat Cheese and Saffron Risotto: A rich and aromatic risotto where goat cheese blends with the delicate flavor of saffron. To prepare it, toast the rice with chopped onion, deglaze with white wine and cook adding hot broth. At the end of cooking, stir in goat cheese and a sachet of saffron, then serve with a generous grind of black pepper.
  4. Goat cheese and roasted peppers omelet: Whisk together eggs, salt, and pepper. Add roasted bell peppers cut into strips and crumbled goat cheese. Pour the mixture into a non-stick skillet and cook over medium-low heat until the omelet is set. Serve hot or at room temperature, garnished with chopped chives.
  5. Eggplant rolls with goat cheese and pesto: Cut the eggplant into long, thin slices, grill or roast until soft. Spread a little goat cheese and a teaspoon of pesto on each slice.

    Roll up the slices and secure them with a toothpick. Place the rolls in a baking dish, sprinkle with a little olive oil and bake in the oven for about 10 minutes at 180°C. Serve the rolls hot, garnished with fresh basil leaves.

Not only do these recipes highlight the goat cheese, but they are also simple to prepare, ensuring a guaranteed success in the kitchen.