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Cantal is the oldest known French cheese, and has a documented history back to the times of the Gauls. The cheese originates in what is now Auvergne.

Modern cantal is available in two types: Cantal fermier (which is a farmhouse cheese made of fresh cow's milk), and Cantal laitier, which is a semi-hard mass-produced cheese.

The process for production involves heating the milk to 90F, when liquid rennet is added to produce the curds. The resultant curd is then cut into small pieces, and when the whey has drained off, the pieces are pressed into moulds. The cheese is then cured for three months at 50F before being offered for sale.

The cheese's interior is firm and consistent, with a milky flavour when young, developing into a strong cheese when aged. The thick and smooth grey-brown rind is usually discarded. Cantal has been described as being an excellent "country cheese", being remeniscent of pasture and rich fields.

LETS TALK ABOUT CHEESE: Noder JudyT describes Cantal as "rather disturbingly salty".

research source: cheese.com

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