Though the most familiar Canadian cheese to American may be the cheese curds on Poutine, in honor of Canada Day, July 1st, we are featuring Oka, one of Canada’s native cheeses. Oka was created by trappist monks in Deux-Montagnes, Quebec in 1893 at the Abbey of Notre-Dame du Lac (known as Oka Abbey), where it earned its name. The recipe for Oka was sold by the Trappist monks in 1981 to a cheese co-op Agropur. The cheese is modeled after French Port Salut cheese, but was tweaked to have an original taste and to adapt to local conditions. Oka is a buttery, semi-soft cheese with an orange rind, which lends itself to a wide variety of recipes calling for a melty cheese (Grilled cheese or Mac and Cheese seem suited to Oka). Food Network Canada has a gussied up version of Poutine with Oka, or how about Oka Fondue or an Oka and Tomato tart.