Chèvre Noir is a goat’s milk cheese.
Even though it is made from goat’s milk, however, Chèvre Noir is not like other chèvres: it’s actually more of a cheddar.
The cheese is made in rectangular bricks. On the outside, it is coated in two layers of black wax. Inside, the cheese is a bone-china white, as is typical of goat’s milk cheese colouration, but with a hard, crumbly, smooth texture that is toothsome, and develops some minute, highly-flavoured lactose nodules high in flavour.
It is made from milk obtained from goats from July through to December, supplied by a cooperative of producers in the centre of Québec, Canada.
There are two versions of Chèvre Noir: one using “thermalized” milk and the other raw milk. The “thermalized” milk is heated at 63 C (145 F) for 30 minutes — which doesn’t technically qualify as pasteurization.
To make Chèvre Noir from either form of goat’s milk, the milk is warmed, then a starter culture is added, then vegetarian rennet to curdle it and calcium chloride to help give a firmer curd to work with.
The version made from thermalized milk is aged 1 to 2 years (some independent cheese affineurs age the cheese for 3 years.) Longer-aged Chèvre Noir become granular, making a good grating cheese.
The version of the cheese made from raw milk is aged a minimum of 6 months, up to 12 months. These versions have a moister crumb and a milder flavour, but have more of a goat taste to them.
The cheese is sold either in a 900 g (2 pound) brick, or in slices.
Chèvre Noir is made by the Fromagerie Tournevent in St-Damase, Québec. Besmargian, Gilles. La Fromagerie Tournevent quitte Chesterville pour St-Damase. Montreal, Quebec: La Presse. 19 January 2007.
Serve and use Chèvre Noir as you would cheddar.
The thermalized and raw milk versions of Chevre Noir both have a fat content of 28%.
The Tournevent company was founded by René Marceau in 1980.
Chèvre Noir was developed in 1988 by a Louise Lefebvre, who had started working at Tournevent in 1984. It was introduced to the market in 1989.
Tournevent was bought by the Damafro company in 2005, who later in 2007 moved production of the cheese from Chesterville, Québec to their existing factory in St-Damase, Québec.
|↑1||Besmargian, Gilles. La Fromagerie Tournevent quitte Chesterville pour St-Damase. Montreal, Quebec: La Presse. 19 January 2007.|