Chevrotin cheese

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Chevrotin cheese

Chevrotin cheese is a raw goats' milk cheese made in the Haute Savoie region of France. It is a soft, almost sweet, aromatic cheese with a yellowish rind and a white mould.

  • Description

Chevrotin is an AOP and AOC cheese made exclusively from unpasteurised goats’ milk; the cheeses are cylindrical, with a diameter of 9 to 12 cm and a height of 3 to 4.5 cm, and weigh 250 to 350 g. It is a soft, almost sweet, aromatic cheese with a yellowish rind and a white mould. This cheese is pressed, uncooked, with a washed rind, partially or totally covered after maturing with a fine white mould composed mainly of geotrichum and contains at least 45 g of fat for 100 g of cheese after complete desiccation with a dry matter content no less than 45 g for 100 g of cheese. As soon as it is mature, Chevrotin is individually packaged in a pack that includes a removable base consisting in a thin sheet of spruce. Chevrotin cheeses are packaged whole.

  • Geography

The area includes the whole territory of the following municipalities in the department of Haute-Savoie:

Abondance, Alex, Allèves, Arêches, Aviernoz, Bellevaux, Bernex, Boëge, Bogève, Bluffy, Bonnevaux, Brizon, Burdignin, Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, Châtel, Chevenoz, Chevaline, Combloux, Cons-Sainte-Colombe, Cordon, Demi-Quartier, Dingy-Saint-Clair, Domancy, Doussard, Entremont, Entrevernes, Essert-Romand, Faverges, Giez, Habère-Lullin, Habère-Poche, La-Balme-de-Thuy, La Baume, La Chapelle-d'Abondance, La Chapelle Saint-Maurice, La Clusaz, La Côte-d'Arbroz, La Forclaz, La Rivière-Enverse, La Tour, La Vernaz, Lathuile, Le Biot, Le Bouchet, Le Grand-Bornand, Le Petit-Bornand-les-Glières, Le Reposoir, Les Clefs, Les Contamines-Montjoie, Les Gets, Les Houches, Les Villards sur Thônes, Leschaux, Lullin, Magland, Manigod, Marlens, Megève, Mégevette, Mieussy, Montmin, Montriond, Mont Saxonnex, Morillon, Morzine, Nancy-sur-Cluses, Nâves-Parmelan, Novel, Onnion, Passy, Praz-sur-Arly, Reyvroz, Sallanches, Samoëns, Saxel, Serraval, Servoz, Seythenex, Seytroux, Sixt-Fer-à-Cheval, Saint-André-de-Boëge, Saint-Eustache, Saint-Ferréol, Saint-Gervais-les-Bains, Saint-Jean-d'Aulps, Saint-Jean-de-Sixt, Saint-Jean-de-Tholomé, Saint-Jeoire, Saint-Laurent, Saint-Sigismond, Saint-Sixt, Talloires, Taninges, Thollon-les-Mémises, Thônes, Thorens-Glières, Vacheresse, Vailly, Vallorcine, Verchaix, Villard sur Boëge, Villaz, Villeen-Sallaz, Viuz-en-Sallaz.

The area includes part of the following municipalities:

Ayze, Duingt, Gruffy, La Roche-sur-Foron, Lugrin, Marignier, Marnaz, Perrignier, Scionzier, Saint- Jorioz, Viuz-la-Chiésaz

The area includes the whole territory of the following municipalities in the department of Savoie:

Aillon-le-Jeune, Aillon-le-Vieux, Allondaz, Arith, Bellecombe-en-Bauges, Cléry, Cohennoz, Crest-Volland, Doucy-en-Bauges, Ecole-en-Bauges, Flumet, Jarsy, La Compôte, La Giettaz, La-Motteen-Bauges, La Thuile, Le Châtelard, Le Noyer, Les Déserts, Lescheraines, Notre-Damede-Bellecombe, Puygros, Saint-François-de-Sales, Saint-Nicolas-la-Chapelle, Sainte-Reine, Thoiry, Ugine.

The area includes part of the following municipalities:

Hauteluce, Le Montcel, Marthod, Mercury, Montailleur, Plancherine, Saint-Jean-d'Arvey, Saint-Jeande-la-Porte, Saint-Offenge-Dessus, Thénésol, Verrens Arvey, Villard sur Doron.

The link between Chevrotin and its origin is due to the combination of a natural environment colonised by human practices adapted to the environment which result from generations of know-how. Chevrotin has been produced from time immemorial in the departments of Savoie and Haute-Savoie, as attested by 18th century deeds in the municipalities including Alpine pasture. The geological skeleton of the Chevrotin production area is characterised by sedimentary limestone. The landscape is ridged with hard limestone bars at whose feet lie pastures of an altitude higher than 1 500 metres, with a mountain climate marked by heavy rainfall throughout the year and very low winter temperatures. The combination of the climate and geological environment means that the area has major forage potential.

These conditions are suitable for a wide variety of flora, especially in the high pastures where, depending on the duration of snow cover, the inclination of the parent rocks and their geological type, animals find a diverse range of environments and vegetation groups. In these conditions, Alpine breed goats, which are robust and prolific milk producers, are well adapted to the environment and can move around with great ease to make use of the most difficult forage resources in the mountains. Production conditions are defined in such a way as to preserve the special features of the area and ensure that they are reflected in the features of the product. It is clear that, historically, the technology applied to the manufacture of this goats’ milk cheese is similar to that used for the cows’ milk cheeses of the region, such as Reblochon. Chevrotin is the only rapid curdling, washed-rind goats’ cheese in the industry.

  • History

The earliest references to Chevrotin date back to the 18th century, but the cheese had probably already been known in Savoie and Haute Savoie for some time before then. The most relevant documents are farm-out agreements (actes d'amodiations): the lessee (usually a mountain stockbreeder) often paid dues in the form of cheese. Chevrotin is routinely mentioned in this context. Despite a fairly small goat population, Chevrotin was manufactured after the kids were weaned, i.e. in the season of return to the heights.

Every milk producer, every processing plant and every maturing plant fills in a ‘declaration of aptitude’ registered with the INAO. Registers and any other documents required for checking the origin, quality and production conditions of the milk and cheese must be kept at the INAO's disposal by the operators. A translucid white casein plate bearing the designation of origin and the producer's identification number is affixed to the cheese in the course of manufacture. The finished products undergo laboratory tests and tasting to ensure that they are high-quality, typical products

  • Production

Method of production: Chevrotin is exclusively a farm product. The milk used is never obtained by collection from a number of herds, but is always that of a single herd. Most of the milk used to produce Chevrotin comes from Alpine breeds of goat. There are two separate herd-management seasons, based on the use of the natural resources of the mountains:

— During the winter season, which lasts five to seven months, fodder is used, mainly from the local area. Locally-produced fodder accounts for at least 70 % in dry weight of total fodder consumption.

— For the remaining period of at least five months, feeding is based on grazing the spontaneous vegetation of the diversified pasture on the heights. Supplementary feeding is marginal.

Each goat has an available area of at least 1 000 square metres. Milk output per goat is limited. The milk is used raw and whole, with no standard protein or fat content. All physical processing other than filtering to eliminate macroscopic impurities is prohibited. It is prohibited to remove anything from the milk, or to add anything other than rennet, lactic ferment and salt (sodium chloride).

From milking to the end of the manufacturing process, the milk temperature must never be lower than 10° C or higher than 40° C. No more than 14 hours may elapse between milking the first batch and adding rennet. Simple cooling of the milk helps to encourage natural ferments and to avoid the development of psychotropic flora. After the addition of rennet, the milk rapidly coagulates. Cutting, stirring, draining of whey, pressing and salting are all carried out manually. The curds are cut to a size between that of a grain of rice and a grain of maize. For moulding, the curds are placed in individual moulds. After filling, the moulds are turned once. Pressing takes six to twelve hours, during which the moulds are turned at least once more. The cheese is then salted, then dried for five to nine days at a temperature between 15 °C and 20 °C, during which time the cheeses are turned daily. Maturing lasts at least 21 days on a spruce board, to develop the aromatic qualities of the cheese; during the maturing phase, the cheeses are turned at least three times a week. The only surface colouring agents authorised are carotene (E160a) and rocou (E160b).

Reference: The European Commission

Calories in different varieties and various types of cheeses

The number of calories in various types of cheese is very similar when you compare your cheese to a similar types of cheese.

For example, almost cheeses that are similar to Cheddar cheese have around 400 calories per 100g

If the Chevrotin cheese is not listed below, select a similar type of cheese from the list below to get a rough idea for the number of calories in Chevrotin cheese.

The calorie lists are sortable by clicking the up and down arrows in the heading columns

Cheese type Calories per 100g
American cheese 371
Blue cheese 353
Camembert cheese 299
Cheddar cheese 402
Cottage cheese 98
Edam cheese 357
Farmer's cheese 98
Feta cheese 264
Fontina cheese 389
Goat cheese 364
Gouda cheese 356
Gruyere cheese 413
Mozzarella cheese 280
Parmesan cheese 431
Pimento cheese 375
Provolone cheese 352
Queso blanco cheese 310
Ricotta cheese 174
Roquefort cheese 369
Swiss cheese 380

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Errors and omissions

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