Herbs for cheese are a match made in heaven. Whether the herbs are used within cheese or used as separate entities to bring flavours to your cuisine, this mix never disappoints. With the 20th January marking national cheese lover’s day, we thought it only right to dedicate this week’s blog to all things herbs and cheese!
Maybe you’re wondering how to make the perfect winter grazing platter, or what herbs even work with which cheese? At World of Spice, we are one of the top bulk herb companies in the UK, so you’ve come to the right place! Here we take a closer look.
A Brie-f History of Cheese
Sorry, we had to! Puns aside, cheesemaking has been an important part of human culture for thousands of years, and still is! We don’t know the specific date in which it became a an art, but we do know that by the time of the Roman Empire, it had become a common practice. By the time of Julius Caesar, hundreds of cheese varieties were being produced and traded across Europe. The likes of popular specimens such as Cheddar, Swiss, Parmesan and Gouda are relatively new to the cheese story, only appearing in the last 500 years!
In the 1800’s it was discovered that adding herbs to cheese only enhanced the flavours. By this time, cheesemaking had reached America, and it was there that things became a little more experimental. Herbs we now associate with cheese, such as sage and rosemary began featuring in cheese mixes for added flavour and additional health benefits.
Fast forward to today and the demand for cheese worldwide is higher than ever. Last year, global cheese production amounted to about 21.86 million metric tons, with the market expected to continue an upward consumption trend over the next decade. It’s fair to say that our planet is a full of cheese lovers!
Cooking with Herbs and Cheese
Herbs and cheese are natural partners in the kitchen. There is a herb pairing for every cheese and plenty of fun to be had in finding the combinations that suit your palate best! Take your time with experimenting and learn to enjoy new pairings.
The key is to first decipher whether your cheese is pungent, sharp, sweet, bold, nutty etc. You can then match your herb accordingly. Using herbs for cheese will ensure a variety of flavour profiles that will keep your customers coming back for more!
Of course, herbs can go in cheese during the binding process, but you can also use herbs and cheese in other ways too:
Toppings: Scatter a cheese topped pie with your chosen herbs to instil a depth of flavour to the top layer of your dishes. You can also make a cheese and herb crumb for topping, as well as using herbs as a garnish topper on a cheese or grazing board.
Sauces: Cheese and herbs make the most delectable sauces! Simply mix together and heat. The volatile oils will infuse the cheese sauce mixture with a light semblance of your chosen herb. This ensures an extra element of flavour in any pasta dish and can give your cuisine the edge.
Fillings: Herbs and cheese together make a delicious filling. Whether it’s in a pastry parcel, in a calzone, or in a cream cheese to spread inside your scone, don’t forget that herbs and cheese can be used as a moreish filling.
Essential Herbs for Cheese
In our opinion, these are the bulk herbs you should have to hand if you’re looking to pair with cheese.
Herb and Cheese Pairings
If you’re looking to make an impact through cheese, we’d recommend trying these pairings.
Blue Cheese: parsley, sage or garlic stand up against the pungent nature of this strong cheese.
Brie: the creamy flavour of brie works best with thyme, chives, basil, and tarragon.
Cheddar Cheese: pairs with many herbs and spices but partners very well with sage, bringing out the sharp nature in a mature cheddar.
Goat’s Cheese: and dill are a great match. The fresh and fragrant nature of dill compliments the distinct flavour of this cheese.
Feta: this cheese pairs effortlessly with basil and oregano. Feta’s briny afternotes work incredibly well with these fresh woody herbs.
Gouda: fragrant herbs such as thyme, rosemary, or sage work well with creamy and nutty gouda.
Monterey Jack: is paired nicely with the fresh notes of dill or oregano, these effortlessly compliment the stronger notes of this cheese.
Mozzarella: when it comes to herbs for cheese, basil and mozzarella are
one of the most iconic cheese and herb pairings. Rosemary can also work well if you’re not a fan of basil.
Ricotta: Thyme or parsley are a perfect match with this cheese.
Swiss: the sweet nature of swiss cheese works best with dill or chives because of its sweet and flavourful essence.
Heating Herbs in Cheese
Whenever dried herbs are heated with cooking fat, the volatile oils seep out and infuse the other ingredients! Herbs heated within cheese taste incredible for this reason! Take camembert, for example. Simply make small incisions in the top of the cheese rind, add salt, pepper, rosemary and garlic and bake. Your herbs will completely transform baked cheese, infusing it with a fresh and fragrant essence.
Get in Touch
At World of Spice, we understand the importance of authentic and traditional tasting cuisine. As experienced and trusted suppliers of herbs online, our herbs and spices are known for their purity and potency, full of delicious flavour to give your food the edge. Our service is cost-effective and reliable; we go above and beyond for each of our customers to ensure that you get the produce you need for business.
From bespoke blends to a choice of packaging, complete with custom labelling, our comprehensive service can help you achieve your culinary goals. For more information about our services and what we can offer you, please contact us at please contact us at email@example.com, or feel free to call our team on 01277 633303. We look forward to hearing from you.