Living in the Alps is a dream for cheese lovers and I consider myself one of them. Sure, I always liked cheese, but life in Austria has taken me to a whole new level of cheese appreciation. There's your Bergkäse (mountain cheese), Sura käse ("sour" cheese), goat cheese, sheep cheese, Appenzeller, Tilsiter, Greyerzer...the list goes on and on. Cheese is so versatile. You can cut it into cubes to enjoy with some fruit or salami. You can make fondue for dipping. You can drizzle some honey on it and let it melt in the oven, then spread the tasty combination on bread. There's really no limit and I love exploring the different ways to enjoy this culinary delight.
Recently, I started teaching English at a local cheese company. The head of production is one of my students - what luck! Halfway through the first lesson he asked me if I liked cheese. After registering my enthusiastic nods, he left the room and promptly returned with rolled up slices of mountain cheese and his new, not yet on the market, baked cheese crackers, made only of 3 different mountain cheeses and bread crumbs. Heaven! During the second lesson he merely looked at me and asked, "Cheese crackers?". By the third lesson, a package was already waiting on the table and I thought to myself, "This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship."
If someone told me I had to make a choice between giving up chocolate for the rest of my life and giving up cheese, you can probably guess by now which one would go. Time for me to get some lunch - think I'll give those Swiss-cheese-stuffed tater tots a try. Don't wait for me.