Many people know the Girolle cheese shaper from making beautiful flower shaped cheese portions with the Tête de Moine cheese. Do you know that there are other Swiss cheese that you can use this clever device with?
Tomorrow is international Raw Milk Cheese Appreciation Day and we’ve got quite a line up for you around the country where you can taste amazing #rawmilkcheese tomorrow:
- Boccaccio Supa IGA, Balwyn: Tasting/sale of various raw milk cheeses including our Rolf Beeler range
- RHCL, Richmond: Tasting/sale of Rolf Beeler Alp Dräckloch (raw milk, alpage cheese, the only one in the country!!!)
- Bill’s Farm Queen Victoria Market: Tasting/sale of Rolf Beeler Vacherin Fribourgeois & Rolf Beeler Gruyère (the superb combo for a raw milk cheese fondue extravaganza!!!)
- Little Cheese Shop, Bayswater/Perth: Tasting/Sale of Rolf Beeler Gruyère, Rolf Beeler Alp Sbrinz and French Roquefort
NEW SOUTH WALES
- Cheese Etc, North Sydney: Tasting/Sale of various raw milk cheeses including our Rolf Beeler range
Have you ever wondered exactly why raw milk cheese is so important? Have you ever asked yourself why so many of the world’s most famous cheeses (Comté, Swiss Gruyère, Parmigiano-Reggiano, to name a few) are legally required to be made from raw milk?
Raw Milk Cheese Appreciation Day is your chance to find out what makes these cheeses truly extraordinary. The Oldways Cheese Coalition and the Guilde Internationale des Fromagers are teaming up on Saturday, April 16, 2016, for a worldwide celebration of raw-milk cheese.
The Red Cow is certainly part of this day as we’re Australia’s premier importer of artisan raw milk cheese. Our Sélection Rolf Beeler range including top sellers like the Gruyeère, Toggenburger or Vacherin Fribourgeois are all made from untreated milk so are other cheese we import such as the Milchzapfen, Tête de Moine or Bachtelstein.
1st of August is Switzerland’s birthday, the 724th to be precise. There are numerous events throughout Australia to celebrate this day: In Melbourne you can enjoy traditional food, music & dance at the annual Swiss National Day Celebrations in Heidelberg. In Sydney and Perth two of our retailers celebrate with Swiss cheese masterclasses together with Tom.
- The Red Cow cheese tasting & sale in partnership with Walmas
Sunday, 2nd Augut 2015, 11am to 4pm
Austrian Club, Heidelberg
Event infos can be found here
New South Wales
- Swiss Cheese Tasting Event with Tom
Sunday, 23 August, 11am to 6pm (2 sessions)
The Stinking Bishops, Newtown/Sydney
Tickets go on sale from 14 July via the Stinking Bishops
- The Rolf Beeler Project – Swiss Cheese Masterclass with Tom
Thursday, 13 August, 6 – 8pm
Whipper Snapper Distillery, Perth – organised by the Little Cheese Shop/Bayswater
Tickets go on sale next week, check the Little Cheese Shop’s Facebook page for details
Cheese contains a host of nutrients like calcium, protein, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin A and vitamin B12. Cheese can also help to prevent dental diseases and fight cancer. Plus hard cheese like most of our Swiss raw milk cheese contain virtually no lactose.
Below are a number of resources highlighting the health benefits of cheese further:
- Dairy Council of California – Nutrients in Cheese
- Quality Cheese – Health
- Rogue Creamery – Health benefits of cheese
- The Dairy Council – Health benefits of cheese
- The Telegraph – Cheese: the secret to a longer life and faster metabolism?
Let us know if you come across any other research or articles that you would like to see listed here.
The days are getting shorter and colder, so it’s certainly time to bring out the Fondue set. This traditional and iconic Swiss dish seems to have a bit of a revival here in Australia, hence we tend to see quite a few recipes and myths floating around. So, let’s look into what is actually necessary and what’s just, well, a myth.
Growing up in Switzerland this dish was part of my upbringing. But mind you, at home we never prepared the fondue like the typical Swiss-German family, oh no, my parents used to live in the French speaking part (the birthplace of this dish) before I was born. There they learnt the traditional – and in my opinion – best way of making an authentic, Swiss cheese fondue. In Switzerland they call this one “moitié-moitié”, meaning “half-half” and referring to the cheese mixture of half Vacherin Fribourgeois and half Gruyère.
You will see that the best thing about this fondue – besides its amazing taste of course – is that it’s really simple and works every time.
Ingredients (per person):
- 200g grated cheese mix (half Vacherin Fribourgeois, half Gruyère)
if you want a superb mix, I suggest you use 1/4 aged Gruyère like our Sélection Beeler Gruyère and 1/4 younger Gruyère
- 100ml dry white wine (the original recipe calls for a Swiss Fendant (chasselas grape), but you can get to a similar result with an unoaked Chardonnay, a dry Riesling or a Gewürztraminer).
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 tsp corn starch
- ca. 50ml Kirsch (yes, it has to be Kirsch, no cutting corners here – and make sure you the as-good-as-you-can-afford quality)
Slice the garlic and pour the cheese mix, the wine and the garlic in a fondue pan (Caquelon). Put it on the stove on medium heat. Yes, the stove. You can cook your entire fondue on the little burner that was part of your fondue set, but it will take a long time and is really the right way of doing it. Some people prefer to rub the pan with the garlic but I find it better to be sliced and put in.
Stir the mixture regularly. I only use a normal fork for this and I don’t bother with the figure 8 that everybody says you have to. As long as you mix everything, you’re fine.
Make sure the mixture does never boil. It will take a little while depending on the amount of cheese. Then, mix the Kirsch with the corn starch and once the mass is fully liquid (no lumps in the cheese!) add this mixture to the pan. Now constantly stir and wait until the mixture transforms into a slightly thicker, uniform consistency. Should the liquids not bind, use a bit more of the starch/Kirsch solution. Also to get the corn starch to react, it needs a bit of temperature (but not boiling!).
Finally, add a bit of freshly ground pepper and serve.
It takes a very good cheese maker to deal with some of the most expensive ingredients you can find. Willi Schmid certainly fits that criteria very well and his creation, the Büffel Trüffel is another showcase of his immense talent.
The cheese certainly is very unique – it is made from buffalo milk and local, black truffles and matured for 3 to 4 months at Willi’s own maturing cellar in Lichtensteig (Toggenburg). The buffalo milk comes from a small herd of Italian water buffalo shared between two farmers that are located not far from Zurich in Switzerland. The milk is brought to Willi Schmid where it is made into this gorgeous cheese. The end result is a superb cheese with a creamy texture, teeming with that amazing black truffle flavour.
But let’s get Willi to tell us a bit more about his creation:
Where can you find it?
This cheese is currently available at Leo’s Fine Food & Wine in Kew, Victoria.
A while back when I visited Rolf Beeler in Switzerland, he showed me a product he recently discovered in Spain. It was rice, Spanish bomba rice to be precise. The packaging looked amazing and it screamed ‘artisan’ all over it. A little confused, I asked Rolf, why he’s all of a sudden into rice. He replied, look Tom, I love artisan cheese, there’s no doubt about it, but when I stumble upon another product with similar characteristics, i.e. a product that is produced in a sustainable way, with true ‘terroir’ and of the highest possible quality, why shouldn’t I promote it?
It made sense to me and I tried the short grain rice shortly after; in the form of a self-made paella. Holly molly, this rice stayed firm, yet retained all the beautiful flavour of the broth it was cooked in. I found it absolutely stunning. And just to be sure, I cooked another paella with the same recipe but chose a different bomba rice and the difference couldn’t have been more stark.
Back in Australia, I showed my sample to John Lawson from No. 8 by John Lawson at the Crown Casino. He had a similar reaction like I did with Rolf at first, but once he tried a batch, he called me straight away and let me know about his excitement. You can even see some of his beautiful creations, like a truffle rice pudding or a gorgeous rice salad on our Tartana Bomba Rice product page.
Today, you find the rice in its ‘gourmet’, 500g size at many premium retailers around Melbourne. For example Leo’s Fine Food & Wine (all stores), Spring St Grocer in Melbourne’s CBD, Bill’s Farm at the Queen Victoria Market or Delicatess in the Prahran Market. We even have it in our online store and ship it nationwide.
Seriously, do yourself a favour, try it – you won’t be disappointed.
This year we’re trying out a new festival – the French Festival dubbed ‘Paris to Provence’. The 3-day event will take place Friday, Saturday, Sunday, 21 – 23 November 2014 in the beautiful surrounds of the Como House & Garden in South Yarra, Melbourne.
Each year the National Trust property of Como House and Gardens transforms into a replica French pop-up village where you can smell, touch and taste all that embodies France and truly captures a vibrant and lively French village atmosphere.
Did I just write French atmosphere? Mais non, well, at least it will be a very “Suisse” influenced atmosphere at our stand as The Red Cow is exclusively showcasing cheese from the French part of Switzerland or as they say “de la Suisse Romande”. I won’t take away the surprise of what these cheeses actually are, but it’s certainly worth a visit!
You can pre-purchase tickets already (cheaper!) or buy them at the entrance. We’re there Friday 12pm to 8pm, Saturday 10am to 6pm and Sunday 10am to 4pm. Come and say “bonjour”!
Paris to Provence – French Festival 2014
21 to 23 November 2014
Como House & Garden, South Yara