Presentation Card of Morbier Cheese
Location in France: Doubs, Jura, Saône-et-Loire and Ain counties
Appellations: Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (AOC) since 2000, Protected Designation of Origin (PDO or AOP in French) since 2002
Milk used: Raw cow’s milk
Type of cheese rind: Fine, smooth and slightly moist
Type of cheese paste: Fine, smooth, uncooked pressed paste
Texture: Soft and smooth
Fat content: 28 %
Color: Orange pink
History of Morbier
Morbier is a typical French cheese from the center east of France made from raw cow’s milk.
Origins of Morbier
The origins of Morbier cheese go back more than two centuries to a small village of the same name in the Haut-Jura region. Over the years, production has spread to other counties in the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region, notably Doubs, Saône-et-Loire, and Ain, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region.
Easily recognized by the thin layer of vegetable charcoal visible in its center, Morbier has a flat cylindrical shape 30 to 40 cm in diameter. It weighs an average of 7 kg, with a height of 5 to 8 cm. Beneath its beige-orange rind lies a soft, light-yellow paste, made exclusively from raw cow’s milk.
How is Morbier Cheese Made?
Morbier is made exclusively with milk from cows of the French Montbéliarde or Simmental breeds. This rigorous selection ensures the quality of the cheese, which is distinguished by its rich, balanced taste.
There are several stages in the production of this exceptional cheese:
- Renneting: the milk is heated to below 40°C, then rennet is added to form the curd;
- Delactosage: the curd is then placed in a vat heated to less than 45°C to reduce its lactose content by replacing some of the whey with water;
- Before pressing: a thin layer of vegetable charcoal is manually applied to the surface of one of the curd loaves to form the famous black stripe in the middle of the Morbier cheese;
- Pressing: the curds are pressed to remove more liquid and give the cheese its final shape;
- Salting: either dry or in brine, this operation adds flavor and helps preserve the product;
- Ripening: the wheel of Morbier cheese is finally placed in a ripening cellar for more than 45 days, then regularly rubbed with water to help form the rind.
Morbier Cheese Tasting
Not very sticky and very melt-in-the-mouth, Morbier cheese has a creamy texture and offers a taste experience like no other. Its distinctive taste is a delicate blend of lactic and fruity flavors, enhanced by hints of vanilla and caramel. As it matures, it develops balanced flavors that combine vegetal and spicy notes.
How to Enjoy it?
Morbier is made all year round but is best enjoyed between April and October. Whether eaten raw or with a slice of bread, it boosts our immune defenses thanks to its high protein and vitamin (A, and B) content.
Thanks to its creamy, melt-in-the-mouth texture, this AOC cheese pairs perfectly with an AOC Jura wine such as white Côtes du Jura or white Arbois. Before serving, leave at room temperature for at least half an hour.
Recipes with Morbier Cheese
Morbier cheese goes well with a variety of savory recipes and preparations, and not just as an accompaniment to mixed salads. It’s perfect for baking in the oven to enhance dishes such as :
- Savory tarts
- Pumpkin soup
Similar Cheeses to Morbier
Only one variety of Morbier is produced in the Jura, Doubs, Saône-et-Loire and Ain counties.
On the other hand, this pressed, uncooked cheese is sometimes confused with Reblochon and Saint-Nectaire. What they have in common are their lactic flavors and fine fruity notes, but each variety has its own particular tastes that make all the difference.