Never discard those little leftover bits and pieces of cheese lurking in your refrigerator. The tag ends of Brie, Cheddar, farmer cheese, chevre, Roquefort, Mozzarella, and scores of other cheeses can be quickly transformed into a tasty mixture which the thrifty French call fromage fort ("strong cheese"). Seasoned with fresh garlic and a few splashes of wine, it makes an assertively flavored topping for toast or thick slices of crusty country bread and tastes best when briefly melted under the broiler.
To make fromage fort, gather together 1 pound of leftover cheese (3 kinds is enough, 6 or 7 will be even better). Trim off any mold or very dried out parts from the surface. Toss 3 or 4 peeled cloves of garlic into a food processor and process for several seconds until coarsely chopped. Add the cheese to the garlic along with 1/2 cup dry white wine and at least 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper. Process until the mixture becomes soft and creamy, about 30 seconds. Remove the mixture from processor and transfer it to a crock or bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
Steven Jenkins' Cheese Primer
- The Fromage Formula: How to Buy Cheese for a Crowd
- The Art of Serving Cheese
- Suggested Cheese & Wine Menus
- Cheeseboard Accompaniments
- Leftover Cheese
- Tricks of the Trade: Caterers' Tips
More Wine & Cheese-Spread Party Recipes
This page created 1998 and modified September 2007.