The name ‘Boulette d’Avesnes’ comes from the place of origin of the cheese (Avesnes) and its shape.
The cheese is in the shape of a ball, which is formed with the hand, was created using the cheeses which did not form correctly in the mould, or were damaged during the cheese making process. The Boulette d’Avesnes is made using the pate of Maroilles cheese, which is ground up and aromatised with tarragon, parsley and crushed pepper corns. Originally, whilst the farmers made their butter, these cheeses were obtained by cooking the residual buttermilk, and could then be left pure, or mixed with normal curds after curdling and draining. Like many traditional farm products, this product was most often quite low in fat.
The Boulette d’Avesnes weighs between 200 and 300g, depending on the producer.
The cheese in matured for between 2 and 3 months in a humid cellar where it is washed with salt water.
Exterior appearance of the Boulette d’Avesnes cheese: brick red coloured, smooth rind. The pate is speckled with aromatic herbs (parsley, tarragon) and pepper.
Odour of the Boulette d’Avesnes cheese: aroma of tarragon
Texture of the Boulette d’Avesnes cheese: doughy consistency
Taste of the Boulette d’Avesnes cheese: strong, peppery flavour.