When I put together the menu for my Solstmas celebration, I had a creeping suspicion there was too much cheese on the menu.
If you’re like me, you might say “Impossible!” But let’s take a hard look it. Of course, I started with a bountiful cheese plate, with Point Reyes Blue, a cranberry-studded Wensleydale, a cute little bloomy-rind soft cow’s milk cheese (whose name escapes me), and of course a big wheel of Brie. Two, if you count the one that never made it out of the fridge.
In addition to that I served several sliced cheeses, like Cheddar, Gruyere, Swiss, and Muenster along with the Niman Ranch ham.
And for some reason I bought a big log of goat cheese … for reasons that escape me at the moment, other than my profound love of coagulated milk products.
Then, a few days before the Solstmas party, I was given 6 pounds of cream cheese that were left over from another event I attended. Despite my avowed love of bagels and cream cheese, I need another way to use that much cheese, so enter the pumpkin cheesecake and a heaping bowl of dip made from cream cheese, sundried tomatoes, and Kalamata olives.
But here’s where I really went off the rails. For the last few years I’ve made a cheddar-ale soup for the Solstmas party. You see, I own a crockpot, which makes soup one of the few hot dishes I can serve at an all-day buffet that sits on the table for almost 10 hours. And since I prefer to make a vegetarian soup, for those who don’t eat ham, cheese soup just seems the most festive, Christmasy option available to me.
Now, all of this wouldn’t have been so bad if so many of the guests hadn’t brought cheese dishes as well. There was macaroni and cheese, and a big plate of various goat cheeses and crackers, and another small cheesecake as well.
Suffice it to say, I have a ridonkulous quantity of cheese left over from the party. Like, several pounds of cheese. This is perhaps a tenth of the surplus fromage.
And this is after days of eating cheese for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Bagels and cream cheese for breakfast. Cheddar-ale soup for lunch. Brie and crackers for dinner. And cheesecake for dinner. Ugh. Last night I made the Cocktail Host pick us up some Chinese takeout for dinner, because I just couldn’t face the prospect of consuming any more lactose.
For tomorrow night, I’ve engineered a dish using leftover goat cheese, Wensleydale, and Parmesan, along with some remnants of bread, ham, eggs, and vegetables to make a strata. But otherwise, help! What is a cheese-loving girl to do when she just can’t stand it any more?