Brie

Brie
/bree/, n.
a salted, white, soft cheese, ripened with bacterial action, originating in Brie.
[1840-50]
/brddee/, n.
a region in NE France, between the Seine and the Marne.

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cheese
 soft-ripened cow's-milk cheese named for the district in northeastern France in which it is made.

      The preliminary soft curd of Brie is molded in flat, pancakelike rounds 9–15 inches (23–38 cm) in diameter and 1–1.5 inches (2.5–3.8 cm) in thickness. After the curd becomes firm, the cheese is sprayed with spores of penicillium candidum, a mold that forms a thin, downy white crust. The cheese ripens within three to four weeks. The interior is an ivory-coloured paste that has a semisoft, chalky centre when young but becomes soft and creamy throughout when fully ripened. Highly perishable, it remains in this state only briefly; at advanced stages of ripeness ammoniated odours develop, and the cheese begins to dry out and harden.

      Brie originated near Paris, where unpasteurized, farm-produced Brie de Meaux and Brie de Melun are the most highly esteemed versions. Most Brie today is made in factories from pasteurized milk, which prolongs the life of the cheese but weakens its flavour. Brie is now widely imitated in many cheese-producing countries.

      natural region of northern France between the Seine and Marne valleys. It occupies most of Seine-et-Marne département and parts of adjacent départements. The region was historically divided between the king of France (the Brie Française) and the duke of Champagne (the Brie Champenoise) from the 9th to the early 13th century, when the crown took it over. Broken here and there by forests, its fertile limon soil produces wheat and sugar beets, and cattle are raised as well. The region is known for rose culture, introduced about 1795 by the navigator Louis-Antoine de Bougainville, and for the soft white cheese called Brie.

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