We found the first mention of Fuerteventura cheese and the way of life of the majos in the chronicles of the first conquerors, naturists, and expeditionary who passed through the islands in their discovery routes in the XV, XVI, and XVII centuries. The work “Le Canarian” narrates the conquest of Lanzarote and Fuerteventura carried out by Jean de Bethencourt, and Gadifer de la Salle between 1402 and 1405 is described the way of life of the first settlers of Fuerteventura. This work says:
“They do not eat the salt-only meal. They have high meal stocks without adding salt. They hang it at home, leave it dry, and then eat it… They are provided with exquisite cheeses, made only with goat milk.”
Majorero is a goat milk cheese from Spain. Similar to Manchego, this firm cheese has a milky, nutty flavor that goes well with various pear products. It is pale white color, and comes in large wheels. Majorero comes from the island of Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands.
The word Mahorero (Majorero) is a Guanche word still used today to describe the people of Fuerteventura. This island has a rich farming tradition, and goats were essential to their economy. It is from the Majorera goat that this particular cheese is made. The goat produces thick, aromatic, and high-fat milk.
Majorero cheese is usually available in three ways: in its natural rind rubbed with oil, rubbed with pimenta, or with roasted gofio. The cheese has a slightly gummy texture. The taste is acidic, with a buttery but not salty taste. This cheese is versatile and can be used with pasta, potatoes, and many vegetables.
After milking, lamb rennet is added, and after an hour, a curdle develops. These curdles must be beaten and drained to remove the whey. The cheese is then heavily pressed and shaped. Dry salt is rubbed on the top. The cheese must be aired for several days before it can be eaten, or it can be set in dry rooms to age. After aging, the cheese can be rubbed with oil or gofio to prevent excessive drying and give it different tastes and textures.
We can find different types of majorero cheese: fresh, soft, semi-cured, cured, and other delicious varieties more elaborate with ingredients like paprika, “gofio” (toasted cereal flour), or made with the flavor of smoked salmon or macerated oil.
Cheese lovers should make it a point to travel to the heart of Fuerteventura to visit the cradle of Majorero cheese, one of the most popular foods in Canary Island cuisine.
Majorero Cheese Museum
Located in Antigua, the Majorero Cheese Museum immerses visitors in Fuerteventura’s traditions as it teaches them about this type of food and the island’s cheese-making heritage. The facility has three main areas—the cheese museum, the mills, and the garden—that take guests on an exciting journey through the island’s history.
Fuerteventura Cheese Museum
Explore the exhibition rooms to learn about the island’s volcanic origin, topography, flora, and fauna. Discover the secrets of Majorera goats and the result of their dairy production: Majorero cheese. Before you leave, try the cheese and purchase a souvenir from the gift shop.
The Majorero Cheese Museum is housed in an open-air space with countless possibilities. A stroll through the garden invites you to discover new species of one of its most famous plants: the cactus. Check out the cardón de Jandía (Euphorbia handiness). This cactus can only be found in Fuerteventura, along with other traditional species that grow in the archipelago, such as the golden barrel cactus, the Canary Island spurge, and the Canary Islands dragon tree.