Originated in the city Casar de Cáceres (hence the name Torta del Casar), this cheese is now produced in a region of Spain called "Extremadura" where hot summers and short winters give rise to a variety of herbaceous plants. Made only from the milk of Entrefina and Merino sheep that graze upon these plants, it is curdled with thistle rennet, that gives a slightly bitter flavor. Add salt, wait 60 days, and the resulting cheese is pungent, rich and creamy -- almost spoonable! Traditionally, the top is sliced off, and the center is dipped into with crackers or crusty bread. It takes the milk of 20 of these low-yielding sheep to make 1 wheel of Torta del Casar.
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