La Calahorra is produced mainly from unpasteurised ewes’ milk, but can be mixed with goats’ milk. It is now only home-produced for local consumption in El Sened and Guadix (Granada). It is also seasonal, being made from late winter to early spring and is sometimes preserved in oil so that it will last until the following year’s production.
The semi-hard cheese is pressed by hand, and is cylindrical. It can weigh between 1.5 kg and 3 kg and is matured for 2-3 months. Having a brown rind, which can be oily in spring, the interior is ivory white to straw coloured. It has small irregular holes.
The texture of the cheese is slightly elastic and has a strong barnyard-y aroma. If it is matured in high humidity, it can be quite foul smelling. It has a well-developed flavour which is slightly sour, salty and spicy, is buttery in the mouth and has a strong aftertaste of sheep.
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