Cheese is one of those amazing ingredients that can totally transform almost any recipe. But while we all have a handful of cheeses that we regularly use or select for our dishes and cheese platters, there is a big world of cheese out there.
Whether you’re looking to try out a new recipe or simply want to expand your cheese palette, here are some of our favourite types of cheese that you must try at least once:
This crumbly sheep milk cheese comes from the hills of France and is aged at least five months before serving. It has delightful pockets of blue mould throughout, lending a sharp, sweet and nutty flavour to this European favourite. Best served with figs or pears.
Since Chévre means ‘goat’ in French, it tends to become a bit of a blanket term for any type of goat’s milk cheese. However, the traditional version of Chévre should be experienced with the aplomb and attention it deserves. When it’s fresh, Chévre has a soft and creamy texture with a unique earthy flavour that is distinctly different to cow’s milk cheeses. As it ages, it takes on a firm and crumbly texture and a tang akin to lemon juice.
This semi-hard to hard cow’s milk cheese originated in Holland. Gouda texture and flavour profiles can vary wildly, from mild and creamy versions, to one that is crumbly and full of bite. Long-aged gouda can take on qualities similar to Parmesan as it loses moisture, making this variety better suited for grating over the top of your pasta or salad.
This Spanish sheep’s milk cheese is aged for at least 60 days before serving, with a deeply salty flavour that develops as it ages. The firm cheese is best served as is, in all its glory, on a cheese platter, with quince paste to balance out the salty flavours.
This creamy Italian cheese is made by curdling milk cream with citric or acetic acid. It results in a rich, soft cheese with a high butter content and is an essential ingredient in Italian desserts like Tiramasu and cheesecake. But Mascarpone can be used in savoury recipes as well because it enhances the flavours without overwhelming them.
This semi-hard artisanal cheese comes from the Swiss Alps. It has a pale yellow colour and a taste that balances acidity with a sweeter, nuttier flavours. It is served by heating using a grill, or traditionally the heat from a fire, with the melted cheese scraped over sides such as boiled baby potatoes, gherkins or cured meats.