Discover the exceptional Serra da Estrela Cheese
Made by the people of the mountain villages for over hundreds of years, Serra da Estrela cheese is nowadays one of the most popular cheeses.
What distinguishes this cheese from the others is the fact that it is produced exclusively from the milk of the Serra da Estrela Bordaleira sheep, which is then curdled with the thistle flower (a typical plant of the region). But in addition to the ingredients, to produce this cheese, the ancestral wisdom of Portuguese cheesemakers is still needed.
Our Pumpkin and Chestnut Jam it is perfect to accompany with Serra da Estrela cheese.
How this cheese is made
The production of the Serra da Estrela PDO cheese begins with the manual milking of the sheep. The milk obtained is filtered through white cloths, to be heated and salted. The recommended temperature is between 28º and 32º degrees. Then the thistle flower, previously ground with salt, is added to curd.
After the mixture has rested for about an hour, the curd is cut manually before going through a new filtering process. This second filtration will remove the excess of serum.
The cheese is now molded and it starts the maturation process. In the first phase of this process, which lasts about 20 days, the cheese is kept between 6º and 12º degrees. During this period, daily washes are performed.
After the first stage, the cheese moves on to the second stage of maturation, which lasts about 45 days. The temperature in this period should vary between 6º and 14º degrees, the humidity should be around 90% -95% and the washing and turning are not done daily.
The unique flavor from Serra da Estrela
The final result is a cheese with an intense aroma, slightly spicy, salty and with a slightly acidic character. It may have a semi-soft buttery and yellowish-white paste (traditional Serra da Estrela cheese) or a semi-hard to extra-hard paste of brownish orange color, the typical Old Serra da Estrela cheese.
How to enjoy Serra da Estrela cheese
This cheese is excellent by itself. It has a unique flavor that makes it a hit among cheese lovers. However, for those looking for unique combinations, we advise you to enjoy this cheese with pumpkin jam, as the tradition of the Serra da Estrela region demands. For this magnificent cheese, we created the perfect jam to pair it: Pumpkin Jam with Chestnut.
Check our other irresistible combinations that we suggest for the true cheese lovers.