Learn how these two similar French cheeses are different and how they are similar.
One day I was eating some Camembert cheese when it hit me - what's the difference between what I am eating and Brie cheese.
At first glance they looked pretty much the same. And they seem to taste the same.
So is it just another name for Brie?
The only way to find out was to do some research. And that started with getting both in my house at the same time, so that a side by side study could be done.
A taste test and some internet research has led me to the conclusion that yes, Brie and Camembert are different cheeses.
Here are my findings.
What is Brie?
Brie gets it's name from the region in France with the same name. The cheese is covered in a white mold which is edible, but some people like myself don't like the taste. I think if you are more of a mushroom fan you would like it.
Inside that white mold is a creamy, spreadable when warm cheese.
Authentic Brie is made from raw cow's milk. It can't be sold in US until it has aged 60 days and at that point would be overipe.
Double vs. Triple Creme
Sometimes you will find Brie cheese that is labelled as Double Creme or Triple Creme. Naturally that means these cheeses are creamier. But what do these terms really mean?
It's about adding cream to the milk, so that is has a higher percentage of butterfat. Here are the rules:
- Regular brie - less than 60% butterfat
- Double creme - 60-75% butterfat
- Triple creme - at least 75% butterfat
It doesn't mean that it's describing the total fat of the cheese as a whole. What it does describe is the amount of fat of the dry matter of the cheese (cheese is part water) is so much percentage butterfat.
How is Cambembert Different?
Just like Brie, Cambembert is named after a region in France.
Cream is not normally added to Camembert like you see with some types of Brie.
The wheels of cheese tend to be smaller than that of Brie. Just like at the shape of this wedge, you can tell.
It is not as popular as Brie at least here in the United States. It was harder to find as many options to try at the store. Each store usually only offered one type of Camembert while offering several types of Brie.
What I can tell you is that Camembert has a bolder flavor. Since I prefer milder cheese, I like Brie better.
Which do you like better? Leave a response in the comments below.