Spotlight on Flavor this May: Enjoy a Southwest Cheddar Fiesta at Pineland Farms

Spotlight on Flavor this May: Enjoy a Southwest Cheddar Fiesta at Pineland Farms. As spring unfolds, Pineland Farms Dairy Company in Bangor, Maine and the Market at Pineland Farms in New Gloucester, Maine are proud to feature a cheese as lively and spirited as the season itself: our Southwest Cheddar. This cheese is more than just a variety – It’s a celebration of innovation, crafted with passion and a story of dedication and creativity.

The Birth of a Bold Blend

Inspired by the spicy zest of Southwestern cuisine, the idea of our Southwest Cheddar was born from Robert Reindeau, a cherished member of our cheese-making family since 2019. As Rob approaches his five-year anniversary of working with our lead artisan cheesemakers, we celebrate not just his tenure but his impact. Rob’s idea to create a “spicy cheese even kids will enjoy” and his experience as a local seasoned chef blossomed this flavor’s concept into a cheese that captures the essence of culinary adventure.

Pineland Farms Cheese Making Facility

 

A Bold Blend for Every Occasion

Our Southwest Cheddar blends the rich, mild profile of cheddar with the lively heat of green chilis and red pepper flakes. This combination creates a creamy yet robust cheese, perfect for a festive celebration. Compared to our Three Pepper Jack, which is known for its smooth meltability and spicy heat, the Southwest Cheddar offers a creamy, more mild but zesty kick, ideal for those looking to spice up their fiesta without the intensity of a high heat pepper.

Cheddar vs. Jack: Celebrating Differences

Understanding the unique qualities of Southwest Cheddar calls for a quick dive into the differences between Cheddar and Jack cheeses. While both are staples in the cheese world, Cheddar is typically aged longer, resulting in a firmer texture and sharper taste. In contrast, Jack cheeses, like our Three Pepper Jack—made with jalapeño, guajillo, and habanero peppers—are moister and known for their supreme meltability.

Our Southwest Cheddar, with its balanced heat, provides a milder but rich flavor profile compared to our Three Pepper Jack, which offers bold peppers and a higher Scoville heat level. The crafting process for Cheddar involves careful aging and a methodical approach to achieve that distinct sharpness and firmness, differing significantly from the generally quicker, softer process of making Jack cheeses.

Culinary Creations and Pairings

Southwest Cheddar shines in various dishes. Its ability to meld into the rich textures of mac & cheese, casseroles, and dips while maintaining its distinct flavor makes it a versatile kitchen staple. Give this Chicken Taquitos recipe a try! As for pairings, this cheese loves the company of robust red wines, such as a Zinfandel or a Shiraz, which match its boldness. For beer aficionados, an IPA with its hoppy profile complements the spice beautifully. Don’t forget a cold lager for those who prefer a smoother sip to balance the heat.

Pineland Farms Chicken Taquitos Recipe

A Nod to Tradition: Celebrating Cinco de Mayo

This May, we embrace the festive spirit of Cinco de Mayo—a celebration rich in tradition and culinary innovation. Our Southwest Cheddar is perfect for adding an authentic touch to your Cinco de Mayo fiesta, marrying the bold flavors of Mexican cuisine with the craftsmanship of Maine cheese-making. Discover how this cheese can brighten any gathering. At Pineland Farms Dairy, our cheeses are a testament to our heritage, our community, and the relentless innovation that propels us forward.

Spotlight on Flavor this May: Enjoy a Southwest Cheddar Fiesta at Pineland Farms and celebrate spring with Pineland Farms Dairy & our flagship Market in New Gloucester, Maine!