We all have a few go-to cheeses; it usually comes down to trusted favourites and recipes, and knowing how to cook or what to pair the cheese with.
It’s good to try new things, so why not explore how best to enjoy our range?
How to prepare cheese
For standard cheeses like Colby, Edam or Tasty you can use them straight from the fridge.
For our more specialty cheeses like Brie, Camembert or Blue Vein, it's best to take them out of the fridge at least at an hour before you plan to devour them. This is so the cheese has time to soften, which lets the flavours relax and settle into the cheese.
Invest in good knives; you will notice the difference when cutting good quality speciality cheeses.
The shape of the cheese determines how it should be cut; cut blocks into slices, flat wheels and small rounds in wedges like a cake, and wedges into slices. Try to make sure each serving has an equal amount of rind as well as a piece from the centre of the cheese (nose). All slices should have a piece of the 'nose' at the end - to serve without the nose is seen as rude.
How to store cheese
Refrigerate cheese at or below 4°c, and keep the cheese at the back of the fridge or in a draw, as the temperature will be more consistent than in the fridge door.
Guard cheese against tainting by storing it away from smelly foods like fish. Avoid freezing cheese as it damages the protein structure - if you do freeze it, it's best to use it grated.
Wrap cheese in its packaging, with plastic wrap, but don't wrap it too tight as the cheese needs to breath.
Colby – flavour strength: Mild
Mainland Colby is vegetarian-friendly, all-purpose cheese. It's firm enough to cut and grate making it ideal for cooking, baking or delicious on its own. It's best used in a mild cheese sauce, as a second or third cheese in a fondue, or in sandwiches. A consistent melt makes it ideal for grilling, pizzas, fillings and toppings, and Mexican dishes like quesadillas, burritos and taquitos.
Learn more about our Colby cheese
Edam – flavour strength: Mild
Did you know that our Mainland Edam Cheese is 100% vegetarian? It's also low in fat and high in protein. Its subtle, nutty flavour makes it the perfect partner to toast - slap a few slices of Edam on top of a piece of Vogals bread, put it under the grill, finish with salt 'n pepper and you're set! It has minimal oily residue which also makes it perfect for baking and in cheese sauces.
Learn more about our Edam cheese
Mild – flavour strength: Mild
Don't think that our Mainland Mild Cheese is lacking in flavour, it's anything but! Mild still has the good old fashioned Mainland taste, but without the sharpness. It's ideal to give to the kiddies who might be experiencing the wonderful world of cheese for the first time.
Mild is also great in cheese sauces, vege or pasta bakes and goes beautifully in a foundue - foundue party anyone?
To boost the mild flavour, add lemon zest to cheese sauces.
Learn more about our Mild cheese
Organic – flavour strength: Mild
Made from 100% organic milk, our USDA-certified Organic Cheddar is the perfect addition to a Ploughman's sandwich with a large dollop of fruit chutney. We like to pair our Organic Cheese with a bowl of quinoa, tumeric and fresh Winter veges, you might like to also add it to cheese scones or savoury biscuits.
Organic Cheddar also works really well melted over a pizza or on top of a vege or pasta bake.
Learn more about our Organic cheese
Noble – flavour strength: Mild/medium
Mainland Noble is one of our poshiest cheeses. It has a full flavour with a hint of 'sweet' making it perfect for salads, grated into a coleslaw - and sprinkled on fresh apples then put under the grill. Try this for an idea... Grate a cup of Noble, wrap it nad put it into the freezer. Next time you're making a potato gratin, combine the frozen cheese with breadcrumbs and sesame seeds, and sprinkle over your gratin - simply delicious!
Did you know that Noble has 30% less fat than Tasty?
Learn more about our Noble cheese
Swiss – flavour strength: Medium
Our Swiss Cheese is very sweet and nutty making it the perfect partner to a Reuben sandwich or the ultimate breakfast burger! It's never too early for a burger with cheese, right?
Swiss has 50% less salt, making it a good go to cheese if you're watching your salt intake. The holey appearance makes for an interesting looking salad or cheeseboard - it's a conversation starter!
Learn more about our Swiss cheese
Tasty – flavour strength: Medium
Everybodies favourite, our Mainland Tasty Cheese is so full-bodied you should eat it straight out of the fridge, maybe with a dollop of chutney or sweet chilli!
Tasty really shines when it's on top of an Italian pizza or in a cheese scone - your guests will love you for it. It really does add dramatic flavour to mac 'n cheese, risottos, frittatas, quiches and pasta bakes. It's also good for gratin toppings when mixed with breadcrumbs and sesame seeds.
Learn more about our Tasty cheese
Smoked Cheddar – flavour strength: Medium/strong
Cheddar's subtle wood-smoked flavour adds that element of surprise to any dish. It's our favourite on top of a pot of steaming hot mussels, in croquettes and gourmet burgers (did somebody say burgers?). It's also great in risotto and fondues. Or, enjoy it on its own - who doesn't love a smokey cheese flavour hitting the taste buds!
Learn more about our Smoked Cheddar cheese
Vintage – flavour strength: Medium/strong
Like the name suggests, our Vintage Cheese is older than most of our cheeses, it has aged gracefully making it perfect for cooking a quiche, cheese scones or sprinkled over hot pumpkin soup with ground black pepper. Heaven!
To enjoy the real flavour of Vintage, pull it out of the fridge 30 minutes before you want to eat it - the rich flavours would have seeped through the cheese just perfectly.
Learn more about our Vintage cheese
Epicure – flavour strength: Strong
An epic (see what we did there) cheese as a flavour booster in sauces and toppings, Epicure's flavour is quite distinct. Epicure is our oldest cheese in our range, it's the perfect cheese in Mexican dishes and in a grilled cheese sandwiches.
If you're wanting to impress your guests, make your cheese sauce with Epicure, they'll be sure to come back for seconds. Or start with Epicure on the cheeseboard paired with a mild chutney and crackers...the best way to kick off a night with friends or family!
Learn more about our Epicure cheese
Brie – flavour strength: Mild
With double the cream, Brie is best savoured on its own. If you feel the urge to cook with it, the large quantity of cream in this cheese adds an oozy, creamy feel and taste to toasted sandwiches, pizzas and quiches.
Try topping Brie with fresh thyme, tarragon or parsley, pour reisling, sauvignon blanc or pino gris over it, then bake in the oven until piping hot.
Learn more about our Brie cheese
Camembert – flavour strength: Mild
Perfect on its own, Camembert can also be used to cook with. Cut Camembert Cheese into small pieces and spread over pizzas or vege bakes. It'll add a subtle but creamy flavour to your dishes.
Think outside the box and put a round of Camembert on a tray under the grill. When you slice your knife through the centre, the cheese oozes out leaving you coming back for more. Pop some sweet chilli over it and you've got yourself a slice of heaven right there!
Learn more about our Camembert cheese
Haloumi – flavour strength: Mild
Who doesn't love a good Haloumi Cheese? And ours is one of the best! Slice Haloumi evenly and fry it in a dry pan on medium heat. Serve immediately with a splash of lemon and fresh mint. Haloumi is the perfect addition on a vegetarian burger or grilled on a skewer and served with tzatziki.
It’s also great tossed through a salad with crispy bacon and avocado, or as part of a breakfast platter.
Learn more about our Haloumi cheese
Gouda – flavour strength: Mild/medium
A firm cheese, Gouda really does grate and slice perfectly making it ideal for baking and grilling. The firmness also means it has a good flow when melted - so sit it on a vege or pasta bake and you're away laughing.
Don't be scared to try this cheese on a cheese platter - friends will love the texture and the unique flavour. Perfectly paired with nectarines, pineapple and a nice syrah.
Learn more about our Gouda cheese
Havarti – flavour strength: Medium
Smooth, creamy and subtle, Havarti Cheese was developed in Copenhagen by Hanne Nielsen, the wife of a New Zealand farmer who travelled the world studying the art of cheesemaking.
Now that you know a bit about the history of Harvati, try toasting some under the grill or put a slice in a toasted sandwich - what a great way to start the weekend. Havarti also makes a good topping for pasta dishes or as a base for fondue. The mild flavour is also excellent with strong flavours that are found in pesto and chili.
Learn more about our Havarti cheese
Parmesan – flavour strength: Medium
Parmesan Cheese has a mature, sharp flavour which adds richness to sauces, soups, risottos and pasta dishes. It also adds intense flavour to homemade pesto and a tangy bite to a crisp salad. Mmmmmmmm!
Learn more about our Parmesan cheese
Blue – flavour strength: Medium/strong
Enjoyed on its own with a walnut cracker and fig paste, our Blue cheeses won't pass up the opportunity to star alongside any dry white wine or an ale.
How about this for something different - top Mainland blue cheeses with fresh thyme, tarragon or parsley, pour reisling, sauvignon blanc or pino gris over the top, then bake in the oven until piping hot.
Blues also go well crumbled over a Waldorf salad, on a steak with mushrooms, in a rich cheese sauce or in a creamy dip.
Try baking Blue cheese in a ramekin with black berries or a crostini with figs. Add to an indulgent pizza with maple apples and bacon. So many options!
Learn more about our Blue cheese
Feta – flavour strength: Medium/strong
A star in the Summer, our Feta cheeses also have a place in the kitchen over Winter. Try crumbling over soup or for finishing off a vegetable dish, combine with spinach in a filo pie (spanakopita), or place it on a crostini with beetroot relish, fruit chutney or onion marmalade.
In Summer Feta works is delicious with watermelon and mint, or, you can crumble it over tender asparagus spears. Sweet, sweet Feta - don't get caught eating it out of the packet!
Learn more about our Feta cheese