So I was on a morning stroll through the Slingerlands Price Chopper today when I spied something strange peeking out at me from among the soft cheeses in the cheese case. On closer inspection of the small brown squares I saw that they said "fudge" on them. That's strange I thought, fudge in the cheese case?
Picking up a hunk I almost immediately noticed something unexpected and wonderful... The second ingredient is "NY Cheddar Cheese." That is right folks, here we have Upstate New York (Herkimer, a bit south of Utica) Cheddar Cheese Fudge produced by the Herkimer County Cheese Co. What sorcery is this?
|Haha, another ingredient is - "Sorbate to retard mold." I am |
laughing childishly at the thought of retarded mold.
In the past I have seen recipes around for "Velveeta Fudge," and after a cursory search of "Cheddar Fudge" on the googles I found that the concept is fairly well attested. I found several different recipes and began to wonder how I was left in the dark in terms of cheddar fudge for all of these years. Upstate New York makes some of the best cheddar in the nation and you would think a purveyor, such as myself, of the strange and wonderful delicacies of our fair homeland would have been let in on this secret...
A goodly sized hunk was only a little over 3 green bills at 5 dollars a pound.
There she is folks. If you showed me this and I didn't know, I would assume that this was a standard, run of the mill block of fudge.
With a bit of trepidation (cheddar cheese fudge?!?) I sliced off a chunk and gave it a gander. The fudge seemed to have a creamy kind of consistency and there were flecks of what I initially took to be little hunks of cheddar... This seemed a little gross but upon closer inspection I realized that the odd little bits were chopped up nuts.
Now I am a brave man as far as culinary matters go, but somehow the thought of a chocolate/cheddar combination was unsettling to my sensibilities. It took me a tick or two to build up the courage to take a big ol' bite. But as with most things that you are worried about eating, the Herkimer cheese fudge was utterly normal. It tasted like a nice, smooth, chocolatey fudge with crunchy bits of nuts in it. I think I was expecting some sort of "sharp/aged" flavor from the cheddar but this character was completely absent.
If you like fudge, which I really don't, I guess this is a fair to middlin' example. Much more interesting for its novelty then its inherent fudginess I think.
But anyhow, if there has ever been a food that is more emblematic of the title of this blog, then the Herkimer cheese fudge is it. I can't think of any more ridiculous Upstate New York foods then this example. If you are aware of something better, do let me know. Thanks.