Chèvre is the name for a really delicious, soft and creamy goat’s milk cheese sold in fat little logs, these days flavoured and enhanced with a range of ingredients either inside the cheese, or on the outside. These may include sundried tomatoes, cranberries, crushed black pepper or herbs. Given that goat’s milk cheese lends itself to all kinds or complementary flavours, flavouring it with papaya is not entirely unexpected or to be frowned upon.
Since unflavoured goat’s milk cheese is tart, savoury and creamy, it is a delicious partner for any type of cracker, as part of a cheese board, or even as part of an antipasti board. In this papaya-enhanced version, the cheese is softened slightly by the papaya, and gains a little complexity from the seasoning and lemon. This version would be excellent on good crusty bread, or even spread liberally on a really well-charred piece of steak.
The recipe uses two logs of chèvre, but you could do it with just one log, or even combine one log with an equal quantity of another soft cheese. Please remember that some recipes use chèvre to refer to any other goat’s milk cheese. This is incorrect and misleading since various cheeses that behave and taste differently can be made from goat’s milk.
Ingredients for 8 to 10 people:
Zest of 1 lemon and the juice of ½ lemon
2 x 100 g chèvre
¼ t salt
¼ t freshly ground black pepper
5 ml (1 teaspoon) cumin, toasted whole, then ground fine
20 g finely diced papaya
Additional thinly sliced papaya slivers
Edible flowers and leaves
Mix all the ingredients together. Roll the cheese into a log about 4 cm in width, using some cling-film. Have another piece of cling-film ready, and place the edible flowers and thin slices of papaya in the same size and shape as the log flat on the plastic. Transfer the log onto the flowers and roll it tightly in the plastic. Store in the fridge for a couple of hours to firm up before using.