A nifty article to ponder over the port and Stilton from the WSJ today on the origins of cheese-making:

Researchers on Wednesday said they found the earliest known chemical evidence of cheese-making, based on the analysis of milk-fat residues in pottery dating back about 7,200 years. The discovery suggests Europe’s early farmers added a cheese course to their diet almost as soon as they learned to domesticate cattle and started regularly milking cows.

Scientists led by geochemist Richard Evershed at the U.K.’s University of Bristol tested ancient, perforated clay pots excavated at sites along the Vistula River in Poland, and found they had likely been used by prehistoric cheese mongers as strainers to separate curds and whey—a critical step in making cheese.

I have on occasion smelled some cheeses which might well be 7000 years old.

Have I ever recommended an omelet made with Pecorino Romano before?  You ought to give it a try.   (Mince some garlic and cook it into the egg while you’re about it.)

And thinking of early cheese reminded me again of the Mothe’s three-sentence summary of the Clan of the Cave Bear series by Jean M. Auel, which has always made me laugh and laugh:  “Woman tames fire, Woman has roll in the hay.  Woman domesticates horse, Woman has roll in the hay.  Woman invents agriculture, Woman has roll in the hay.”

UPDATE:  Oh, why not: