Time to explore the world of cheese as each month we meet a cheese; get to know more about them and tempt you to try them next time you’re looking for something different or new in your cheese life. Truffle season is upon us so we chatted with an Australian Truffle Cheddar from Tasmania to get the low down on how you can enjoy ‘real’ truffles at home all year round without going out to dine or going on your own “truffle hunt” for expensive fresh truffles.
Like to put some truffle on your toast every day? Let’s read on…
Where are you from?
OK, have you heard of the Tamar Valley in Tasmania? The Tamar Valley follows the Tamar River from Launceston to Bass Strait and is home to not only a truffière but escargot (snails), salmon, abalone, cherries, honey and some of Australia’s best cool-climate wines…I’m really blessed to have such wonderful ‘foody’ neighbours.
But to be exact, my truffles are grown by Tamar Valley Truffles on 8ha with 3000 trees planted in 2001 near Lake Trevellyn. In fact, they were the first successful truffle growers in Australia! Only the best milk from our local dairy farmers to make their truffle cheese. If I can boast a little too, Tamar Valley Truffles won the prestigious 2020 Lux Food Award for Best Truffle Product Manufacturer in Australia.
So, tell us a little more about you?
Well, I am a vintage club cheddar… I have been sitting around for about 14 months developing my flavour profile – gorgeously nutty with a little sharpness then Rod, he’s the cheesemaker, adds pieces of fabulous Tamar Valley black truffle. After 4 months, my cheddar is truly infused with garlicky, earthy, nutty flavours and an aroma that is unmistakenly… truffle.
So, it’s really about the truffles? What’s a truffière? How do you even pronounce it?
Not really…it’s more about the results you get when you bring our flavours together. The mild, slightly buttery taste of cheddar and the unami hit of truffle combine to a unique hit of rounded earthy savouriness. Violà Truffle Cheddar!
A truffière is the French name for an area or land where truffles are found. It’s pronounced “truf-fière”. This looks difficult to say so listen here for how it actually sounds.
What would you say are your best qualities?
I’d have to say, as a Truffle Cheddar, I am most proud of my medals- a 2017 Bronze and Silver 2016 in the Royal Hobart Fine Food Awards and a Gold Medal 2021 in the Royal Tasmanian Fine Food Awards. But take a look at me in this video, it says it all!
What’s the best way to serve you?
Now you are talking…look, I’m fabulous on my own with plain cracker and I must say, I look spectacular on a cheeseboard. I really bring a depth of flavour to scrambled eggs, risotto, mashed potatoes and of course, grilled on toast.
Be careful cooking with me though, too much heat and I lose my wonderful truffly smell so it’s best to add me close to serving time or just quickly grill.
Finally, what’s your favourite drink?
Being a proud Tasmanian, you can’t go passed some wonderful Tassie bubbles or pinot noir.
Thankyou for your time today. One final question, where’s the best place to find you?
? Kev at The Corner Larder at the Queen Vic Market Melbourne keeps me in stock and even has Tamar Valley Truffle Cheddar on special this month too! So you can order online through Queen Vic Market Online and have me delivered to your door! Or when you can, pop into the Dairy Hall, Shop 33-35 to pick me up. Kev’s always happy to answer any cheese questions you might have too! Shoot him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org