Tete de Moine is a hard, cow's milk cheese from Switzerland. It has a firm, straw yellow paste and a spicy, fruity flavor and aroma. It is matured between 4-6 months and receives regular brine washings which produce a red, sticky rind.
Tete de Moine was invented by monks at Bellelay Abbey, in the Bernese Jura mountains. 'Tete de Moine' means 'monks head' and derives from the tax levied by the abbey whereby the farmers would provide one cheese for each monk during the season. This Swiss cheese is formed into the shape of a short cylinder. It is often shaved using a special cutter called a 'girolle'. Shaving the cheese releases all of its aroma and flavors. Sometimes it is eaten with pepper and powdered cumin. One unit/wheel, approximately 1.9-2.1 lb/861-952 gr.