The tarte au maroilles, or better described as “the stinky cheese tart” as my brother-in-law has put it, is native to the north of France. Maroilles, pronounced “mar-wall”, but with a French accent, is a cow’s milk cheese from the town of the same name. To make it short and sweet, here is the best description I can think of: after a good affinage, it is a cheese that makes one realize the origins of the expression: “Who cut the cheese?” But its bark is worse than its bite, and it’s really a delicious cheese, especially melted and creamy in this classic tart recipe.
Serve with a simple salad and a refreshing gewurztraminer or pinot gris from Alsace as my mother and father-in-law do most Friday nights. Any refreshing little white wine will do, especially if you’re not picky about wine. If you prefer beer, go for a Belgian-style beer, preferably ambrée or blonde. A good cider would be yummy too.
the recipe for Micheline’s tarte au maroilles:
Serves 2 very hungry or 4 normally hungry people
- 30 g butter
- 1 egg
- 20 – 40g fresh yeast
- a bit of milk
- a pinch of salt
- a third of a Maroilles
1. Melt the yeast in about a 1/3 cup of warm milk.
2. Melt the butter.
3. Mix the melted butter with the egg and add a pinch of salt.
4. Add the yeast and milk mixture.
5. Add some flour, mixing until you have a ball that is neither dry nor sticky.
6. Press the dough into a tart tin, cover with a kitchen towel, and leave to rise in a warm place for about 1 hour.
7. Slice the cheese and cover the tart.
8. Cook in preheated oven (about 375°F, or 190°C) for about 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted, and has formed an inviting golden crust.
9. Serve hot.