is a soft, slightly crumbly, mould-ripened cheese
made in the region of Normandy
. One of the oldest cheeses in France, its production is believed to date back to the 6th Century
. It looks somewhat similar to camembert
, with a dry, white, edible rind, but the taste is saltier and sharper. It has aroma and taste of mushrooms. Unlike other soft-white-rinded cheeses, Neufchatel has a grainy texture. It is usually sold in heart shapes, however it is also produced in other forms, such as logs. It is typically matured for 8–10 weeks. In 1872, a New York dairyman, in the township of Chester, created cream cheese
as the result of an attempt to create a batch of Neufchâtel. In the United States, French Neufchâtel is called farmers' cheese.
American Neufchâtel is a lower-fat cream cheese product marketed as a healthier alternative to cream cheese. It is not identical to French Neufchâtel. American Neufchâtel is somewhat softer than cream cheese due to its 33% lower fat and higher moisture content.
Neufchâtel was commonly used in British forms of Cheesecake.