Monday, January 5, 2009

Home Creamery Event Giveaway Contest: Making Cheese and Drinking Wine

Some readers might be wondering why cutie Claire's picture is topping the Vin de la Table home page. Although appearances are deceiving, she does not look old enough to disperse coq au vin and Burgundy pairing advice or impart a baconsnap recipe upon the masses. Ah, but there is a glorious reason. Read on.

Get out your milk and pots, dear readers, for the first Vin de la Table Home Creamery Event: Making Cheese & Drinking Wine is almost upon us. After months of anticipation, the blogging event that will applaud your attempts and triumphs at creating dairy morsels in your own kitchen has arrived. No longer will you have to pay thousands for that tub of fresh ricotta, because after making it once from the Home Creamery book, you will have the power to create that plush goodness at home.

Home Creamery Event Details: The event is open to the public. Every month, I'll pick a recipe for a cheese or dairy good from The Home Creamery book pictured above, and participants (that's you!!!) will make the dairy products. Suggestions for next picks are welcome. After making the dairy product (here's the Vin de la Table hook), participants would pair it with a wine of their choice. There are no limitations. Say we're making mozzarella. Jane Doe (ohh, how she loves fresh cheeses) could focus entirely on pairing the cheese she just made with a favorite wine, or she could make a fried mozzarella sandwich, then tell us about the wine sauce she dipped her creation in and the glass of wine she sipped with her fried cheese (Jane's a naughty girl).

All entries are due until the last Monday of every month (first entries are due January 26th), and contestants are urged to purchase the Home Creamery book by the wonderful Kathy Farrell-Kingsley because while the dairy product recipes and advice included on each page are straightforward and pretty simple, they are too long to post on this blog. Plus, it might provoke fuzzy feelings in us to know that by buying the well-priced $16 book , we are supporting a writer who is nuturing our own creative cheese endeavors.

But before the actual event, I have more good news having to do with the aforepictured Claire. Are you sitting?

In celebration of all things blogging and milk-related, Storey publishers have agreed to donate three books to kick off the Home Creamery event! So, in honor of Storey publisher's generosity and the Making Cheese & Drinking Wine event, I'm holding a contest called: Guess the Cheese.

Guess the Cheese

Every month for three months, I will post a picture of a person (Claire rules January) and contest participants will guess that lovely lady or man's favorite cheese out of a selection of five offerings. The names of all correct guessers will be tossed into a hat, one name will be drawn, and the winner will win a Home Creamery book that they will use to participate in the Vin de la Table event. Please leave your guesses on the comment section of this blog, and for privacy's sake, email me ( your contact information in case you are the winner.

Please remember to email me your contact info in case you are the winner so we can decide where to send the book!

And now we begin!

Guess the Cheese:

Is Claire's favorite cheese:
Swiss Cheese (with holes)
String Cheese (at room temperature)
Fiscalini Bandage-Wrapped Cheddar

Info about Claire that might or might not help one win the contest:
She is six.
She likes to decorate tables for Christmas.
She aims to grow out her hair until it reaches her lower back.
Her mother is a teacher and her father is a cook.

The contest will end Sunday, Jan 11th, midnight, Oakland time.

Good luck! Lastly, three book giveaway rules:
1. All contest contenders must participate in Vin de la Table Home Creamery: Making Cheese and Drinking Wine event.
2. Unless willing to support all of the book's shipping costs, all contestants must live in the United States or have a shipping address in North America.
3. Individuals may enter the contest only once.

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Adam said...

While my 5 year-old loves Époisses because it "smells like feet," I'm playing it safer. I would have once said swiss, but now that Wallace has convinced all children that the moon is actually made of Wensleydale, I'm left only with the unique texture and portability of string-cheese. That's my vote and I'm sticking with it.

Simona said...

I have no idea what string cheese tastes like, but I see plenty of children eating it while their parents are shopping at the Berkeley Bowl, so I assume it is popular with Claire's age range. I'll go with that, though a part of me will hope that it is in fact Swiss cheese, which was my favorite, when I was her age.

linnhe said...

I would have to say that la petite Clair adores Comte, primarily because of the creamy nutty sweet flavor. I would assume she has had it served on toothpicks for little treats and bites. Since Clair has the look of an imp, I would guess that she prefers squares of ham or salami to pair with the Comte.

Jack said...

Putting fingers or peeking through the holes in Swiss cheese prior to taking bite was always a favorite tactile experience in my childhood. I assume kids have not changed that much since the last century, though the ubiquity of string cheese (awful, rubbery stuff) may make it Claire's fave.

Kirstin said...

These are great guesses, very thoughtful too. Keep em' coming!

j said...

Though adorable, Claire looks like a bold girl who would prefer her cheese bold, like the Époisses. But with such a sensitive youthful pallet,my guess is that she may actually not even register that Époisses is something edible. And therefore, though many kids do like string cheese, my guess is that Claire most likes the civilized Comte.

danpetroski said...

Using your clues....

She likes to decorate tables for Christmas = Fiscalini Bandaged Cheddar. Decorate, bandages, hmm.

She aims to grow out her hair until it reaches her lower back. = String Cheese, of course. It can be used as extensions, no ?

Her mother is a teacher = Swiss cheese, the wholes teach kids how to count ?

and her father is a cook = all good cooks go to Epoisses heaven.

So, the only cheese outstanding is Comte. So, I am going to say Comte.

Anonymous said...

comte! also, claire is getting more beautiful by the day!

Anonymous said...

I'm putting my bet on swiss...Claire has an adventurous aura about her…what a magical product where one can nibble at the holes and create numerous masks and rabbit holes to jump into…definitely a Swiss dare devil.

amanda Joost said...

I got so distracted trying to buy a fiscalini cheese basket online that i almost didn't get my vote in by midnight! I hope I'm not too late. I think that Claire's favorite cheese is the Fiscalini Cheddar. Lots to love as a big ol grown up girl her age- cheese to unwrap, its nutty and breaks apart into bite sized pieces, not to mention it delicious. While I'll admit string cheese is awesome, and Im not sure if Im guessing too adult here, I'm going to have to guess that this whole contest would be more interesting if Claire's favorite cheese was a cool one.