More about Munster Cheese ... The tradition in Alsace is to eat 'Munster au Cumin' which is Munster, obviously, served with boiled potatoes, cumin seeds and a glass of wine.
Munster originates from the upper Munster valley in the Vosges mountains of Alsace, France. Munster is an ancient cheese, and has been in existence since the Middle Age. Originally made in monasteries, the name Munster comes from the town of that name which is itself a contraction of the word 'monastery'. Benedictine monks, Irish monks who settled in the Vosges in the 7th century, observing their order's rule against meat, sought nourishment in milk and its derivatives. Although it was first made for their own consumption, the monks later taught the local peasants how to make Munster cheese. The local people then used their cheeses to help pay rent to the monks whose land they farmed. The success of the cheese led to it being produced over a wide area and brought a little prosperity into a harsh and deprived region.
Maturation takes place at a temperature of 12-14ºC. This takes 4 to 6 weeks for small thin cheeses and 2 to 3 months for thicker larger cheeses. Farm Munsters are first matured for a week outdoors before being transferred into caves, They then sit on rye straw next to older Munsters from which they acquire the rind flora. Every other day the cheeses are washed and brushed with brine and annatto. The paste is soft and creamy and has a shiny brick red rind. As with all the washed rind cheeses, Munster has a strong, penetrating smell develops a tangy taste when fully mature.
Munster is often eaten with baked potatoes and finely chopped onions. Munster flavoured with caraway seeds is also to be found but purists believe it should be enjoyed without.
A cheese called Géromé is made on the other side of the Vosges mountains in Lorraine. Munster gained its A.O.C. in 1969 and in 1978 the A.O.C. Munster- Géromé united these two cheeses.
Product Origin; France
Allergens Guide; Dairy
Size guide; 8cm x 3.8cm
Packaging; Plastic overwrap