Limburger Cheese from Taste Cheese ($14.50 for a 200-gram package)
Available at the Hillcrest Farmers' Market
Visiting my dad’s father was a challenge on so many levels, but one of the basic issues was the overpowering odor in the apartment of stale cheap cigar smoke and pungent Limburger cheese. It made me swoon—and not in a good way. Thanks to those olfactory memories I hadn’t even considered trying Limburger as an adult, but Mary Palmer of Taste Cheese convinced me that today’s Limburgers are a different breed from the stink bombs of the ‘60s.
The cheese—a semisoft ripened cow’s milk—originated in the Duchy of Limburg, now divided between Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. Today most Limburger is made in Germany and the one that Taste Cheese sells at the farmers markets is, indeed, German. But the taste—and smell—is nothing like what I remembered from my childhood.
It’s sweet and only a little aggressive in scent—like a good camembert. It spreads beautifully so enjoy it—as I did—on toast for breakfast or on crackers or firm fruit—pears, apples—with a little honey drizzled over it.
Photos by Caron Golden