Saturday, January 15, 2011

Wine & Cheese Event

Painters and Artists League at Gateway (PALS), held a Wine & Cheese on Friday, Jan. 14th for the community. An event where we could show our artwork and mingle with friends and neighbors. In addition to serving wine, shrimp, and appetizers, cheese was the featured dish.

Speaking of cheese, Roquefert was once my favorite. Now its substitute Blue Cheese is being used instead in most restaurants. My children called these cheeses “stinky feet” cheese. Their favorite, of course, was the chewy mild cheese that squeaked on their teeth as they chewed. We bought “squeaky” cheese in bite-sized pieces from a local dairy and brought it home in plastic bags. My kids were also big on “wrapped” American cheese slices and string cheese which my boys shoved up their noses to ape a walrus.

Goat cheese is one of my favorites, but it’s hard to get good quality; some are simply too strong. I swear I can smell the hair and body oil of the goats I fed on my aunt’s farm years ago. Other goat cheeses are mild with a wonderful tang. Goat cheese pizza with sun dried tomatoes is the ultimate yum of blended flavors.

Cheese is a satisfying food. Probably because it’s fattening. Creamy Edom cheese covered in red casing melts on the tongue and tastes even better with a glass of bordeaux. Cheddar, the all time favorite, goes with everything and is a staple for casseroles and sandwiches.

When my daughter was taking a French class, she insisted on eating everything French. Her favorite cheese was the creamy “Alouette” brand on teeny-tiny toast. We purchased French cookies and candies; tried French recipes and dined on French cuisine. I gave her my ultimate support hoping her enthusiasm would remain high and her grades would do likewise. I wasn’t disappointed.

Mice like cheese, too, even better than the dog food they came after in my garage. They are also clever. Whenever I put a mound of cheese on a trap, the little suckers manage to nab the cheese and run off scott free. One thief got his retreating tail “caught in the wringer,” but I didn’t have the heart to kill him. I lifted the spring and off he scampered. So much for brutality.

If you’re a parent of teenage boys, you know the expression “cut the cheese” which my boys said and did often. I refer to this period in their lives as the “anal stage;” when banter with friends and each other is filled with burps, laughter and other words involving bodily functions. In family photos when the cameraman (usually Dad) barked “now say cheese,” he usually got more than he bargained for.

Today’s Photos include artists from the Painters & Artists League (PALS) of Gateway.