Ark of taste
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The quesillo is a soft Argentinean goat cheese made with a plaited paste that hails from the Northwestern part of the country. This raw milk cheese can vary in taste because it will develop unique characteristics depending on the specific region or province where it was made.It has a compact texture that is firm and lightly elastic. The color is pure white, as goat cheeses tend to be, due to a lack of carotene in the milk. The taste is quite smooth and does not exude a noticeably strong scent. Normally, each piece is shaped into an elongated oval that weighs around 200 grams. The quality of the unpasteurized milk is strictly monitored and the health of animals is obviously of extreme importance. A natural acidification of the milk at room temperature is the first step of production – this technique lets it reach a medium acidity before it is spun and plaited into its distinctive shape. Raw milk allows the multiplication of the indigenous lactic flora to grow. No chemical inputs or preservatives are added, so the cheese is best stored in the fridge between 2 and 8 °C.The quesillo’s origin can be traced back to the Spanish Conquest. This was an interesting culinary period as it resulted in the fusing of certain European products and customs to traditional Creole recipes. Today this cheese is still manufactured according to these age old practices in small family farms in Northwestern Argentina – the same place that it first originated. Usually it is consumed fresh as an accompaniment to meals, desserts or fresh fruits. Due to the artisan nature of this cheese it is not available in any established markets. Thus it is confined to local consumption, being sold at fairs or offered by street vendors and traditional restaurants.

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