Winter: Baked Mont D’Or

Taken from Counter Culture: Sheridans Cheesemongers Guide to Cheese by Kevin & Seamus Sheridan and Catherine Cleary. 

The seasonality of this cheese, together with the convivial nature of how the dish is shared, makes it one of our favourites for a cold winter evening. It can be served at the end of a meal to replace the cheese board or as a main course, if accompanied by plenty of winter salads and cold meats.

You can use Swiss or French Mont d’Or and you can also adjust this recipe to suit other washed-rind cheeses. Our favourites are Durrus 360g or Gubbeen 450g. Because they don’t come in boxes, you need to make the following adjustments – rather than score the rind, cut a thin lid off the top and put your garlic and thyme into the paste, replacing the rind lid. Place the cheese in the centre of a sheet of foil, bring up the corners of the foil, covering the cheese, but leave a ‘chimney’ in the centre, formed with the foil. Pour the wine in through the chimney and leave it open during baking.

 

Serves 6 after dinner, 4 as main course

 

500g Mont d’Or in its box, with lid on

1 clove garlic, peeled

2 sprigs of thyme

½ glass of whatever white wine you are drinking

crusty bread to serve

 

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Cut an ‘X’ through the rind of the cheese from edge to edge. Using your thumb, press the sprigs of thyme and the clove of garlic through the centre of the x and into the paste of the cheese.

Pour the wine over the cheese.

Fit the wooden lid back on to the cheese and place it on an ovenproof dish or baking tray to catch any leaks.

Bake in the preheated oven for ten minutes.

Remove from the oven, take off the lid and peel back the scored rind to reveal the warm gooey paste.

Place in the centre of the table so that you and your guests can scoop out the melted cheese with chunks of crusty bread.