Cheese to highlight this April is San Simon from Galicia in Spain. This cow’s milk cheese from Spain will quickly draw your attention in our Deli due to its unique teardrop shape.
San Simon has a subtle smoky flavour. This flavour comes from the traditional process of natural smoking with birch wood. Its remarkable taste makes is an absolute must-try cheese on our list.
San Simon is one of the most popular traditional cheeses in Galicia. Galicia is the Spanish autonomous region with the highest production of cow’s milk.
San Simon’s texture is fine, fatty, semi-hard, semi-elastic and dense. It has a creamy yellow colour with a small number of rounded or irregular shaped ‘eyes’. These ‘eyes’ are various sizes, but usually smaller than half a pea.
San Simon is famous for its traditional conical shape. But there is more. San Simon cheese is deserving to be highlighted due to its absolutely remarkable history which is directly connected to its shape. This shape name in Spanis is ‘tetilla’ which means “small breast”.
This unique cheese shape goes back to the history of the religious city of Santiago de Compostela. For instance, there is a legend that connects San Simon to the history of Santiago de Compostela’s famous cathedral.
When the cathedral was being rebuilt in the Gothic style, stone carvers were hired to complete the friezes on the arched doors. One statue was a well-endowed woman. This scandalized the pious citizens and there was a public outcry to have the statue’s offending bosom reduced (maybe the first boob job in Spain!). However, after the church officials completed the reduction, other citizens were outraged, claiming that there was no reason to deface the artist’s work.
For their rebellion, they started making their famous cheese in the shape of a ‘tetilla’ to celebrate the fact that God loves all people, large and small!
Source Reflections Enroute.
San Simon is an ideal cheese for melting making it perfect for your gourmet toasties. It goes very well with all kinds of meats and fish as well.
Combine it with hazelnuts, walnuts or apples. Add some white wine or beer and you’re in for an absolutre treat.