Six Essential Mexican Cheeses You Should Know

  1. Mexican Cheese

Every culture has its own cheeses. Most people are familiar with some Italian, French and other European cheeses, but let’s not forget about Mexican cheeses. At The Feisty Bull, we know that Mexico has a rich history of cheese making and produces some of the best types in the world.
If you haven’t already, here are six Mexican cheeses you simply have to try.

Queso de Oaxaca

Queso De Oaxaca is a cheese that first came to Mexico through Dominican monks, who learned cheese making in Italy. Similar in look and flavor to mozzarella, this cheese has a mild, milky flavor. Considered a semi-hard cheese, it is processed through stretching. Skeins are pulled in ribbons and then balled together to create the final product. Queso de Oaxaca is most commonly used in quesadillas and empanadas. Try this cheese in our Tres Amigos Enchiladas.

Queso Fresco

Perhaps the best known of Mexican cheeses, Queso Fresco has made its way into a plethora of American, Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes. This cheese is thought to have originated in the Iberian Peninsula. It is created by heating cow’s milk and goat’s milk until boiling, then adding an acid to encourage curdling. The curds are separated and drained to create this crumbly, fresh cheese. Queso Fresco is often used as a garnish on enchiladas or empanadas. The cheese may also be crumbled on top of tacos or our chimichangas.

Cotija

Often sold already grated, Cotija is an artisan cheese that is made in the mountainous regions of Mexico. It is similar in texture to Parmesan, but has a distinct salty flavor, while lacking the nutty flavor that is commonly found in traditional Parmesan. Cotija is not a melting cheese. Because of this, it is often used as a topping for soups and salads. It is also used in burritos and traditional Mexican street corn.

Queso Menonita

Queso Menonita also goes by the name Chihuahua cheese. It was first produced in the Chihuahua region of Mexico, and introduced there by Mennonite farmers. This is a semi-hard cheese that resembles cheddar in its un-aged state, both in looks and texture. It is salty to the taste, and when further aged offers a tang similar to Monterrey Jack. This type of cheese is commonly used in tamales.

Asadero

Asadero is another cheese that is derived from the Italian method of pulling cheese. Similar to Oaxaca, Asadero is slightly more acidic than traditional Oaxaca and melts well. It is often found in bricks and can be pulled apart in strings. This cheese is best used to top chili because of its wonderful melting properties.

Requeson

Requeson is not exactly a cheese, but rather a cheese byproduct. It is prepared by further separating the whey during the cheese making process. The top layer of this process is strained to create a soft, wet curd-style cheese. Its luscious creamy texture and salty nature is perfect for stuffing chiles.

The Feisty Bull
Each of these Mexican cheeses can be used in traditional Mexican dishes, or subbed into other dishes of other cultures for a fresh new take on an old classic. Next time you’re shopping for cheeses, consider sampling the best that Mexico has to offer and come into The Feisty Bull to try some out for yourself!

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