Pélardon cheese

Pélardon cheese . French cheese from the Languedoc-Roussillon region . It is a traditional cheese that benefits from an AOC since August of 2000 . Formerly called paraldon , pélardou or even péraudou . He earned recognition as DOP to European level by Regulation (EC) No 2372/2001 of the Commission of 4 December 2001.


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  • 1 Geographical area
  • 2 History
  • 3 Manufacturing
  • 4 Features
  • 5 Sources

Geographical area

The geographical area occupies part of four departments ( Aude , Gard , Hérault and Lozère ) and a municipality in the department of Tarn . It includes, to the north, the valleys of the Cevenas , from the edge of the calcareous plateaus ( causses ) to the wine-growing plains ; to the east and in the center, the calcareous massifs of the low mountains ( garrigue ) of Gard and Hérault ; to the west, the high valleys of the Lergue , the Orb and the Jaur , and the southern slopes of the Montagne Noire , located in a Mediterranean climate ; finally, to the south, the heart of the Hautes Corbières , limited to the south by the Grau de Maury .


The origins of the Pélardon are very old; the most plausible etymology of his name seems to be that outlined by the Roman naturalist Pliny the Elder , who mentions a «Péraldou» cheese highly prized for its special flavor . In theory, this name is derived from “pebre”, which means ” pepper “, because of its spicy taste. The “Pélardon”, or “Péraldou”, or “Pélardou” is also described in the Languedocian / French dictionary of the Abbé Boissier de Sauvages in 1756 , in the work of Frédéric Mistral , famous Provencal poet , and also in the Dictionary of Arts and Crafts. This cheese is also collected in the departmental statistics of the 19th century .

Throughout the 20th century , despite the reduction of the goat herd parallel to the specialization and modernization of farms, the production of Pélardon has been maintained and has acquired a letter of nobility through the pen of regional writers. In the 1970s , new forms of goat farming appeared, a circumstance that contributed a great dynamism to the production of Pélardon.


According to the pastoral tradition, the milk used must come from herds of alpine , saanen or rove breed goats , or from crossings of the same. They must graze by rearing in the wild , in the garrigues , the moors or under the chestnut trees of Cevenas . Permanent confinement of livestock in buildings is prohibited. Pélardon is a cheese obtained by slow coagulation , essentially dairy , and spontaneous draining from raw and whole goat’s milk, not normalized with protein or fat. Dairy ferments from whey are incorporated into milkderived from the previous manufacturing batch. The addition of rennet can be done well after each milking, or once a day. This curd becomes a Pélardon by evacuating the whey through the holes in the drainer, allowing the reduction of the Pélardon, and especially its passage from the curdled milk to the cheese state. On your stay in the drainer, quite brief (approximately 2 days) the Pélardon will be salted. Salting is carried out on both sides of the cheese, exclusively with dry, fine or semi-fat salt , without phosphates, at least one salting being carried out on one side during draining. Salting in brine is prohibited . Ripening will last a minimum of 11 days, which allows obtaining a textureconsistent. The cheese should be rotated at least once every two days. If the maturation is lengthened, the paste becomes firmer, until it becomes brittle, and its crust darkens. The cheeses presented for sale to consumers must necessarily carry an individual label , except for the batches included in the same package, which can carry a single label if they are intended for sale to the final consumer . The label must include the name of the appellation of originin characters of dimensions equivalent to at least two thirds of those of the largest characters on the label, the indication “appellation d’origine contrôlée”, as well as the indications “fromage fermier”, “fabrication fermière” or any other expression that hint at the artisanal origin of the cheese when the necessary conditions are met. The apposition on the logo label with the indications « INAO » and «appellation d’origine contrôlée» and the name of the denomination is also mandatory . In 2003 , the production of Pélardon amounted to 207 tons .


It is a cheese small milk of goat with soft paste. It has a cylinder shape with rounded edges. Its weight is greater than 60 grams , its diameter is between 60 and 70 mm and its height is between 22 and 27 mm. It contains at least 40 grams of dry matter for every 100 grams of cheese and 45 grams of fat for every 100 grams after its total drying. It has a fine crust, totally or partially covered with light yellow, white or blue mold. It is characterized by its fairly compact paste, with a color between white and ivory ; its textureIt is homogeneous and smooth when cut, although it may be slightly brittle after prolonged ripening. It presents a small taste of hazelnut that gives it a recognized personality. It can be marketed natural, but also with ash or marinated in olive oil and herbs de Provence . Its optimal tasting period lasts from May to September after a 3-week maturation, but it is also excellent from March to November . Can be tasted both on the tray and in the salad. A recipe consists of breading the Pélardon, frying it and then taking it hot on a bed of salad, preferably dandelion , accompanied by roasted croutons. In Cevennes , the curd fresh dessert served in jam of cranberries or honey heathland or brown


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