For The Love of Goat, It’s Valentine’s  Day!

Who likes goat cheese? Certainly not I as long as I have known it exists. I could never fathom the slightest of interest looking at it. Try it? Yeah, that is definitely not going to happen. As cheesy as it may seem, something truly special happened with my disdain.

  
The mere thought of goat cheese baffled me. It sounds awful by name. I enjoy a good cheese to eat with my meal, preferably one that comes from an animal that moos. If that cheese is made from an animal otherwise, like one that baahs, flags go up with great concern. I’ve seen it made from a cow including other dairy products, but never a goat.

How can cheese come from a goat?

As I type this entry in February, I am reminded of Valentine’s Day. It’s a special month where couples are reminded to share in the love of another for at least one day. But this is a food blog and I am single. 

Rarely do I see any dining specials or “happenings” for a single male over the course of these twenty-eight (28)days. 

Well, twenty-nine (29) days when it’s a leap year. I do not qualify for any “couples” special meals in my current situation. So when I saw the February specials at my favorite eatery were not only for “couples” but singles as well. Needless to say, but for the sake of space and tongue in cheek, I was in love. 

 

While the majority of the ingredients used for the specials including spinach, artichoke, and red roasted pepper, it was the entree with goat cheese that made me do a double take. As I have written above and the topic of the entry, I was baffled why this cheese was chosen. I squinted and briefly stuck my tongue out cringing at the notion this was an ingredient for an omelette. 

How dare you food, how dare you?!

Before choosing a different special from the menu, the one with artichoke, I asked my waitress why goat cheese? Her response surprised me as she spoke highly of its smooth mild tart flavor, a less salty feta cheese. She continued explaining it was a popular menu choice with customers enjoying its taste. Clearly she has poor taste in food or just pushing the item for the sake of its soon expiration date.

Oh boy, was I ever wrong.

The question I failed to ask from the start is what is goat cheese? As an anyone interested in learning something new, I looked to the internet for answers. I can confirm I was correct in my assumption. True to the animal, it is definitely not that of a cow. 

Although, goat cheese is not that different from a cow’s cheese. 

Goat cheese has been made for thousands of years and similar to the cow except that it naturally has a tart taste due to its type of fatty acid content and curdling process. You must be wondering about the fatty acid content. Truly it’s really fascinating stuff, so much so I recommend googling it for more information. 

Internationally, goat cheese has a wider appeal outside the western hemisphere including individuals who have low tolerance to other milk types.

When I consider factors like the ones listed, what is my hang up on goat cheese? For me it’s still the fact that cheese comes from a goat. Have you ever heard a goat scream? Check YouTube and see for yourself. While it is funny, it’s also disturbing in my opinion. You want cheese from that? 

  
Talking with a friend on the matter he asked, “What’s so different coming from a cow, an animal that moos?” Ultimately, I agreed. It’s still an animal that produces dairy. There is a cultural difference eating certain kinds of cheese between the hemisphere.

In the Western hemisphere, we have been taught since young by the foods pyramid poster displayed in school cafeterias, the cow is a prominent nutrient provider for our health and well being. 

That still remains to this day having never seen the goat appear anywhere on that poster. Truth of the matter, it comes down to the fear of trying something new. Within that fear are these personal questions we ask trying a new food. What is it? Will I like how it tastes?

Fear is opening a door you never entered  in your life.

A week later, I returned to that local eatery with family for breakfast. As the specials were still available, I ordered one of my biggest fears of food. It was the omelette made with eggs, spinach, roasted red peppers, and goat cheese. The waitress complimented my choice while my family balked. They agreed I will never like it. I was ready to agree with them, but I was hoping for the better. As the meal arrived about twenty minutes later, I was served last. Staring with concern at the dish, I couldn’t help but ask, will I like it and how does it taste? My family joked I’ll spit it out after the first bite. To my surprise and theirs, that was not the case. 

Cutting into the omelette, it was soft and cheesy like ricotta. 

The cheese did not have a noticeable smell. Chewing felt pleasant on the mouth and not like that of a cheddar or provolone. The texture was smooth with a subtle taste of tart. I truly liked the goat cheese feeling relieved of disappointment. Looking at my family, I smiled with a thumbs up. As normal, they swiped a bite from my plate and were equally pleased.

The fear of tasting goat cheese was overcome and defeated.

Leaving the eatery, I thanked my waitress from the week prior for her advice. Not only did I overcome my fear of trying goat cheese with her help, I honestly liked it more than I would have expected. Feta, the foot of cheese, and ricotta have serious competition in flavor and taste from goat cheese. 

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Never stop trying new things.

Thank You WordPress Community

Less than a year ago, I started my journey into blogging with critical excitement intent to prove I could make some worthwhile reads and possibly add to this valuable community of writers and photographers. My personal criticism came in the form of “Will they like my writing or even read it?” In the same bubble of thought, I felt enthusiastic after reading so many of your vivid, exciting and passionate articles ranging from food, cinema, photography, travel and so much more.

What I have learned in the short time being a part of the WordPress community is the welcome comfort to write my blog, Food & Zen, without fear of being judged for my style or content. Everyone approaches writing in their own unique way. In viewing your particular style, you afford me the enjoyment not only to read something new and exciting but to understand your passion as a writer.

To all of the bloggers and the WordPress community, thank you very much for the opportunity to learn something I have never seen or known before. Thank you for your enlightenment and perspective as I continue seeing life through you. And thank you for your time in viewing mine at Food & Zen.

 

                                                 All the best,

                                                 Bobby SoufflĂ© 

California Lovin’: A Food & Zen Review

I was in the mood for breakfast. So, I took a ride over to Persy’s Place of Dartmouth for the afternoon.

Hungry for something simple, my eyes honed in to the California Scrambler. It consisted of three fluffy eggs scrambled with fresh avocado and cheddar cheese to top it off. For an extra charge with the egg whites, I placed my order including sides of home fries and a freshly made fruit cup.

In the short time I had to wait, I found the atmosphere mildly noisy, yet enjoyable.

The waitress was very accommodating from the time I sat until leaving. The temperature was comfortable on the lower humid side with all the air conditioners operational as it was still summer weather. As a result, fewer requests were made for hot coffee.

  

The meal arrived very hot from the first bite. Eggs were soft and fluffy mixing well with the large ripe pieces of avocado and cheddar cheese. The avocado enhanced the expected little to no flavor of the egg whites while the cheese added a layer of goodness to the dish. Additionally, the fruit cup made of grapes, honey dew melon, and cantaloupe including a side of well cooked crispy home fries were outstanding.

Wait time for the meal was pleasantly short as it was prepared and served in under 20 minutes after making the order.

I heartily recommend Persy’s Place of Dartmouth if you’re thinking breakfast for lunch or possibly earlier. They close for 3:00pm during the week if you’re having a bout of mid-day hunger. Bring a full wallet of cash. Your bill can add up quickly depending on your order.

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A Cuban Breakfast Delight 

  

  Poached Eggs glazed in Hollandaise Sauce over Spiral Ham and toasted English Muffins. Adorned with the flavors of Bermuda Onions and sautĂ©ed Cubanelle Peppers. 

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Hearty Breakfast Scrambler: A Food & Zen Review

The Hearty Scrambler is one of the best meals for its value and portion size.

I love egg whites because they are fluffier and lighter than regular eggs. Checking through the menu, The Hearty Scrambler called to me as I desired something lite and tasty. I requested egg whites and roasted turkey in place of the ham. For my sides I chose crispy home fries and a fresh fruit cup. My friendly waitress promptly put in my order. She even made multiple return trips to fill my coffee as I needed the caffeine. The meal arrived less than twenty minutes later steaming from the kitchen

 

First impression of the dish was impressive seeing the mound of food including the broccoli, tomato, and cheddar cheese. My home fries were crisped just right and my fruit cup was flavorful and juicy. From the first to the last bite, I found so many flavors mixing the vegetables, cheddar cheese, and roasted turkey into each bite.

I still had another meal left at the end including both my sides.

My taste buds were thrilled by the many combinations of flavor alone from the vegetables and egg white. The cheddar with its cheesy goodness enhanced each bite more than the last one. Even the roasted turkey was surprisingly good as it balanced out the variety of flavor. I definitely recommend the Hearty Breakfast Scrambler.

Never stop trying new things. Please follow me @ Food & Zen

Goat Cheese + Peas + Scrambled Eggs on Toast

A DIRTY DISH

Once Christmas has passed, I am officially over winter. To me, there is nothing left to look forward to other than the coming of Spring. Not even New Years, which to me is one of the most over-rated holiday celebrations. It’s just always disappointing! So to help myself pretend the flowers are beginning to bloom and the songbirds are returning, I made this toast for breakfast (well actually lunch). It’s easy, fresh, and delicious, and you may already have most of these ingredients in your kitchen.

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Instead of scrambling your eggs, you could poach or fry them – whatever way you like!

GOAT CHEESE + PEAS + SCRAMBLED EGGS ON TOAST

PREP TIME: 5 minutes
ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 15 minutes
YIELDS: 1 serving

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 large slice of bread (I would suggest an artisanal loaf, or you could make your own)
  • 2 oz goat cheese
  • 1…

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