Switzerland is famous for its magnificent, large-format, hard mountain cheeses. Originating exclusively from the heartland of Switzerland, Spalen is lesser known today than the more mature version, Sbrinz, primarily due to an appellation adaptation around the year 1530.
Before Sbrinz became the primary name for this central Swiss alpine titan, the cheese was always known as Spalen in its locality, and all the way down its taxing export route to Italy. Back then these compact, weighty wheels were packed in wooden barrels and arduously transported by cow and mule, but the grueling trek was well worth the trouble because northern Italians could never get enough of Spalen’s expressive, full-bodied, complex flavor. Today, prior to when Sprinz is first inspected at 11 months, the young cheese is still called Spalen.
Tipping the scale at 50 to 80lbs per wheel, Spalen has kept its traditional production mark in Switzerland’s Nidwalden and Obwalden cantons, but can be produced wherever Sbrinz is made. Crafted from raw, whole cow’s milk, Spalen’s smooth, elastic paste is very firm without a single hole and its milky taste is deliciously swept with sweet cream and overtures of alpine grasses.
Application: Beyond the fondue pot, melt Spalen into or over any dish begging for great Swiss cheese flavor. Grated, shred or cubed, Spalen is a universal taste that plays well in everything from salads and soups, rice dishes and polenta to sandwiches, chicken recipes and steak.
Pairing: An underlying, slightly nutty flavor emerges when paired with Champagne. If red wine is preferable, an old world Pinot Noir, like Burgundy, is a very fine choice.
Mortadella by Ermes Fontana
Product Details: #050735 | 1/11 lb
Mortadella is a traditional blend of finely ground pork infused with spices and studded with cubes of pork fat. Known as the grandfather of American bologna.
Situated at the foot of the Apennine Mountains in Emilia Romagna, known as the Italian Food Valley for the region's abundance of delicious specialties Ermes Fontana is world renowned for their superbly made delicatessen meats.
Application: Makes a delicious gourmet sandwich with pickles, banana peppers and mustard.