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Recipes for enjoying cheeses with ripe fruits and vegetables


When it comes to serving fine cheese, we so often default "cheese plate". But to Chester Hastings, each dish of every meal - from breakfast to supper - is an opportunity to enjoy a distinctive cheese, to appreciate its heady aroma and savour its unique flavour.

Chester's twenty-five years of experience as a chef and cheesemonger give him a unique edge: he knows how to bring out the best taste and texture in any type of cheese, and what kinds of ingredients are perfect complements.

In his approach to cooking, elegant cheese-centric dishes need not be complicated. All you need to do is take a look around your local farmers' market to find fruits and vegetables that are in season, make some good cheese choices, and then do just a little kitchen work to bring together the elements in way that allows their characters to really shine.

In these pages, you'll find ninety of Chester's favourite seasonally inspired recipes that combine fine cheeses with the ripest, freshest fruits and vegetables. Some, like Rainbow Swiss Chard and Ricotta Tart and Calzone with Seared Peppers, Fresh Sage, and Ricotta, are well-loved classics. Others, such as Provolone-Stuffed Eggplant Parmigiana and Charentais Melon with Serrano Ham and Garroxta, are new twists on traditional dishes. Still others, like Savoury Fig and Gouda Cake and Poppy Seed Fettuccine with Radicchio, Sausage, and Puzzone di Moena, are creations of pure cheese artistry. And for dessertophiles, finales such as Bing Cherry and Goat-Cheese Pudding and Beach and Pine Nut Tarts with Triple-Cream Cheese are tempting sweets with a savoury edge.

With Chester's easygoing style and clear instructions, The Cheesemonger's Seasons invites cheese lovers of all cooking levels into the kitchen. Whether your taste for cheese leans towards mild and creamy, veers to sharp and stinky, or covers the full spectrum, you'll be drawn to cook with a seasonal rhythm - and will be rewarded with new ways to celebrate the deliciousness of cheese.