Life has the ability to take you places you never even thought of, offering unexpected opportunities to embrace new passions that make each day unique and worthwhile. This is exactly what happened to Nissreen Haram who became an artisanal cheese maker in 2014, driven by a desire for change and the will to do what she loves most!
Wanting to make a positive switch and adopt a healthier lifestyle, Nissreen began searching for substitutes for regular dairy products in 2011. This led her to discover a national treasure, the free-living cattle of Bedouins, and unveil the taste and freshness of the finest sheep milk in the region from which she decided to make delectable aged cheese. “In Jordan, we are blessed with the milk of the Awassi sheep, meaning that we are able to produce some of the finest natural cheese in the world,” she comments proudly.
The unrivalled reputation of the Awassi echoes across the globe. When Nissreen enrolled in the Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheeses in the USA in 2013 for a specialized course in artisanal cheese making, the Jordanian breed was highly praised and her tutors almost envied her for being able to raise them in her homeland and benefit from their superior milk.
Returning from America five years ago and armed with the needed knowledge to launch her craft, Nissreen established ‘Mistaka’ - spending long hours refining her skills on her quest to cheese perfection alongside her enthusiastic team. “I learn so much from the wonderful people I work with and together we are honored to be bringing this craft to Jordan. I always say you should pursue what you love, and this is what ‘Mistaka’ is all about,” she says. At the end of the day, what matters most to Nissreen is the enjoyment that comes from creating cheese, to which she even gives personalized names. “I do it because it’s my passion. I’m not a businessperson, I’m an artisan,” she explains. Today, ‘Mistaka’ offers a rich variety of fresh and aged artisan cheese to people who want to experience the authentic taste of local dairy products.
Through developing and mastering what was once a mere hobby, Nissreen’s ultimate goal now is to pass on this knowledge to upcoming generations.In Nissreen’s eyes, success is determined by the extent to which she lives her passion and helps shape the future for Jordanian makers and artisans. We take care of the business aspect so that Nissreen is able to focus on what really matters; her craft.