August 18, 2005
Moe, Larry, the Cheese!

limburger.jpgNever has a cheese been so defamed by popular culture as limburger was by the Three Stooges. If you believed their films, you'd believe limburger breath has the stopping power of a Colt .45. Of course, you'd also believe that when you're hit on the head with a two-by-four you see grouse, but that's a different story.

Now don't get me wrong. Limburger can be mighty powerful, but it's nowhere near as strinkingly pungent a cheese as the Stooges made it out to be. If you've ever been exposed to a stinky tomme de savoie and survived you'll love limburger.

As a limburger ages, the rind gains a funky odor that I think enhances the taste. The center of the limburger also becomes more and more liquid as it ages, eventually becoming pourable. I don't usually let it get that far, and I'll use pretty fresh limburger for my sandwiches.

Ideally, you should make this sandwich on black bread, dark rye, or pumpernickel. In a pinch toasted wheat bread will do. I always add a thick slice of sweet red onion and a good smear of a grainy mustard on each slice of bread. There are those who add sardines or black olives or anchovies to the sandwich. I can see the appeal, but I like the cheese flavor to come through.

Limburger is a German cheese, but is also made in America, although in lower volumes than previously. There is only one producer in the U.S., but Chalet Cheese Cooperative near Monroe, Wisconsin churns out over 800,000 pounds of the stuff every year. Think about that - 40 tons of stinky cheese every year.

You will certainly have a mild breath issue after one of these sandwiches. That's why I think it's a perfect guy-time sandwich. Just how close are you going to get to your buddies, anyway? If you're playing poker, a well timed puff of bad breath in the right direction might even throw your opponent off his game. Revel in the stink! But, uh, you might invest in some mouthwash before going home to the Missus.

Ladies, you are of course encouraged to try this sandwich yourselves, but make sure you do it during girl time or make sure your significant other also has had one, because while the Stooges exaggerated, a Tic Tac just isn't going to take care of your breath after a good hunk of limburger.

Posted by Barrett in Maryland at August 18, 2005 7:27 AM | TrackBack Print-friendly version
Comments

Barrett,

That sandwich is a thing of beauty. I'd definitely go with dark rye for mine and probably add sardines to half of it. A vidalia onion might be a nice sub for the red onion, too.

Hopefully more people will come to know the joys of stinky cheese and onion sandwiches. Excellent post. Bravo.

-Michael

Posted by eatchicago on August 19, 2005 at 12:34 PM

Barrett, once again your posts have made me drool in envy. Stinky Cheese and Onion sandwhich? I am so there!

Posted by Kate on August 19, 2005 at 12:50 PM

Ah, the joys of being married.

1) Not having to immediately brush your teeth before a morning kiss.

2) Being able to eat in front of the television.

3) Indulging in things like stinky cheese without worry...yum yum yum!

Barreet - this sandwich sounds delish! I will be making one of these bad boys to eat in front of the television soon...!

Posted by Jennifer on August 19, 2005 at 11:09 PM

This lady loves the stinky cheese! And the stinky saurkraut and kimchee, too! Garlic is divine, onions are incredible and fermented black beans are God's gift to Chinese food.

I will tell you what can help your breath after eating these sorts of things. Indian cucumber-mint raita--the combination of yogurt and mint really does help with the breath issue.

Just so you know.

Posted by Barbara on August 20, 2005 at 11:05 AM

Love that stinky cheese! It's all good! I've been away for awhile, and now I have to catch upon my required reading to see what I've missed.

Posted by chef 'em out on August 21, 2005 at 4:00 PM

Thanks for the memories, being reared in Brooklyn and a strong German area, i remember the Limburger cheese, it was a main staple with the Bars of the areas.

I remember the Saturday night my Dad (a real funny guy) took the bet to make a grill cheese Limburger sandwich, oh boy three days to get the stink out, ROFL with the memories. What was even funnier was the three guys that walked in sniffed the air asked who S**T in here turned around and left, the bar cracked up ( hey what do you expect we were half loaded, LOL. The next day te owner came in asking what was that smell and we all left LOL, and the owner puzzled and my Dad calling us cowards. Yeah that cheese has some good memories. Thanks

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