Home' Advocate Communications : Fiordland Advocate 27 March 2009 Contents Page 8 | 27 March, 2009
The annual New Zealand Champions
of Cheese Awards attracted over 400
entries from Northland (Mahoe Cheeses)
to Southland (Blue River Dairy). The best
of the best was an extra mature Gouda
cheese with cumin seeds produced by the
privately owned Mercer Cheese south of
Gouda is a firm cheese with a creamy,
smooth interior and mildly nutty flavour.
It becomes stronger and sharper when
aged. I love it as a snack with red wine
it’s also good with beer. Cumin is the
traditional herb added to Gouda.
Set up by Dutch immigrant Albert Alferink
in the early 1980s, Mercer Cheese has
been a consistent winner in the past with
over 30 medals. Albert’s cheeses are
available from his shop in Mercer plus
selected delicatessens and supermarkets.
Popular Puhoi Valley Cheeses scooped 22
awards with their crème fraîche winning its
category and a gold medal. Crème fraîche
a fresh unripened cheese – is ideal for
dolloping on summer fruits, apple pies,
chocolate cakes and tamarillos. It may be
added to savoury sauces or combined with
herbs for a quick spread or dip.
Goat’s cheese entries were as popular
and diverse as ever. (Old Gold from
Crescent Dairy Goats was one winner.)
Goat’s milk, provides people with dairy
allergies a great opportunity to enjoy
cheese and offers all of us variety on our
Goat’s cheese – with its more distinct
flavour – is an acquired taste, one that
takes time to adapt to. For a starter with
a difference, marinate in a good French
dressing then place on crostini and grill
and serve with a mesclun salad; combine
with equal amounts of sour cream and
add fresh herbs and black pepper and
serve as a dip or as a topping for steamed
vegetables; goat’s cheese may also be
served with slices of pear and drizzled
Not all the winning cheeses are readily
available. If you can’t find the exact
cheese then something similar will ensure
these recipes are still enjoyable.
POTATO & BROCCOLI GRATIN
WITH CRÈME FRAICHE
A great dinner party, main-course accompaniment. May be
prepared ahead, chilled, then baked.
1 large head (500g) broccoli
1 large egg, separated
50g grated Cheddar cheese
100g Puhoi Valley Crème Fraîche or similar
salt, pepper and grated nutmeg to taste
Peel the potatoes and bring to the boil in a large saucepan.
Discard any hard bits from the broccoli stems. Roughly
chop the head and stems and cook in a steamer over the
potatoes. When both are cooked, drain well. Place in a food
processor and briefly mix.
Preheat the oven to 200°C. Lightly grease a 21cm x 16cm
Combine the potato mixture with the egg yolk, half the
cheese, half the crème fraîche and the seasonings. Whip
the egg white and fold in.
Place in the prepared baking dish. Top with the remaining
cheese and dollops of the crème fraîche. Bake for 30
minutes or until golden on top and loosely set. Serves 4-6
as an accompaniment.
GUACAMOLE & FETA DIP
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 small green chilli, seeded and diced
1 ripe, medium tomato, cored and finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
10 coriander leaves, chopped
2 ripe, medium avocados
salt to taste
2 tablespoons lime juice
100g Puhoi Valley Farm Fresh Goat’s Cheese or similar
Combine the shallot, chilli, tomato, garlic and coriander in
a bowl. Peel, stone and dice the avocados. Combine with
the chilli mixture, season and sprinkle with the lime juice.
Top with the crumbled goat’s cheese. Serve as a dip or as a
topping for tacos or burritos. Makes about 2 cups.
Filling: 250g Mercer
Extra Mature Gouda
cheese with Cumin or
100g lean ham
1 small green pepper
1 small shallot
Dough: 2 cups standard
3 teaspoons baking
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
25g butter, chopped
2⁄3 cup milk
The Big Cheeses
The Big Cheeses
Preheat the oven to 190°C. Lightly grease an oven
tray or cover with a silicone sheet.
To make the filling, shred the Gouda and place in a
bowl. Place the ham, pepper and shallot in a food
processor and blend until finely chopped.
Combine with the Gouda. Wipe the food processor
Place the dry ingredients into the food processor.
Blend briefly. Add the butter and process until well
mixed. Add the milk, mixing just until a ball of dough
forms. Turn onto a floured bench and knead for 1
Roll out into a 30cm x 25cm oblong about 5mm thick.
Spread the filling evenly over the dough. Roll up the
dough from a long side. Cut into 2cm slices. Place on
the oven tray.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden.
Great served as a snack or with a salad or soup.
Makes about 15.
BLUE CHEESE BURGERS
1kg lean minced beef
125g Te Mata Creamy Blue Cheese or similar,
3 tablespoons finely chopped chives
dash Tabasco sauce
1 teaspoon each: Worcestershire sauce, wholegrain
freshly ground black pepper to taste
In a large bowl, combine the beef, blue cheese, chives,
Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and black
pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Preheat the grill on high. Gently form the burger mixture
into about 6 patties.
Grill for about 5 minutes each side, or until well done.
Great served in buns with salad ingredients or with
potato mash and salad. Serves 6.
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