What is Taleggio Cheese?
Taleggio cheese gets its name from its place of origin, making it one of the region’s tradition incarnate. It’s identified with its unique exterior which is coarse and edible and perfectly blends with the creamy interiors. It’s this blend of contrasting sensations that makes Taleggio cheese boast of its unmatched flavor and consistency. But does it really another type of cheese that can substitute it? And if yes, then what is a good substitute for teleggio cheese?
This cheese matures quickly and during the aging process, its outer parts are thoroughly washed to promote the intense flavors. The production process also includes infusing 5 different edible molds to come up with the reddish smear which makes it unique.
What does Taleggio Cheese Taste Like?
This semi-soft cheese strikes with its aromatic character, doubled up with a mild flavor. The blend of consistency and flavor in the end gives it a rich and mellow taste. It melts down to tangy and meaty flavors with a fruity after taste. The texture, which includes traces of edible mold ranges from moist to oozy and leaves you with a refreshing melt inside the mouth.
In a nutshell, Taleggio cheese has it all in terms of texture, flavor and taste, features formed during its aging process. However, all these depend on the variation of Taleggio cheese that you have, whether it’s the raw milk, fresher or extra aged versions.
What are some of the famous Taleggio cheese Recipes? This variety is often picked because of how easily it melts, something which makes it a great choice for melting onto your pasta or risotto. The slices are also highly ideal for a grilled cheese sandwich or as a top-up to traditional casserole dishes. The cheese is equally flexible and can as well be used as a substitute in recipes which call for compatible cheese varieties. This also means that even with the traditional dishes, you can also substitute Taleggio cheese with something else.
Why Would You Want To Substitute Taleggio Cheese?
Taleggio cheese remains to be a great option for your cheesy recipes, however here are some of the instances where one would think of substituting it in a recipe:
- Scarcity. In the world of cheese varieties, Taleggio cheese happens to be one of the least produced options. This means that there are chances it doesn’t land on every market, so you can easily run out or fail to find it near you. In that case, you can always replace it with any of the Taleggio cheese substitutes, the best of which I have highlighted below.
- Cost. With scarcity comes a price to pay, making this cheese quite pricey. Some stores might give you options of buying in smaller quantities as it suits your budget, however that will just have you running-out sooner than enough. Therefore, you can always replace it with a workable and relatively affordable option.
- Overwhelming Flavor. If you’re highly bent towards milder cheese varieties, Taleggio might not go well with you; that and the fact that what strikes first is the strong pungent smell. You can still strike a balance with the right substitute, depending on what your recipe calls for.
The Best Taleggio Cheese Alternatives in Recipes
Here are some of the best Taleggio Cheese Substitutes that will save the day, no matter the reasons you have for substituting:
- Fontina Cheese. With the original Italian Fontina Cheese range, you’ll get the same flavor prolife as that of Taleggio. You still have the options of switching up with milder ones in case you can’t stand the pungent traits of the original Italian options. It also melts nicely so you can confidently use it in any Taleggio cheese recipes.
- Gruyere Cheese. This yellow variety still matches Taleggio’s melting properties, irrespective of how hard it is. It releases nutty and tangy flavors which are equally great for salads, soups, pastas, fondues and even sandwiches.
- Brie Cheese. This French variety has different options in its bracket in terms of flavor and taste. One that perfectly suits the place of Taleggio in recipes is Brie de Melun which is characterized with a creamy and soft texture and a strong pungent smell.
- Limburger Cheese. Unlike the rest which either match Taleggio or are slightly lower, here’s something with a slightly stronger flavor.Having been made using similar formulas, using this as a substitute will give you same results which extend to consistency.
- Robiola Cheese. With its origin in Italy, this variety is considered to be from a category similar to Taleggio. It also gives you options to pick from in terms of flavor and texture. Overall, it’s pale-yellow in color, complemented with a tangy, mild sour taste. These key features make it usable as a table cheese and in any other Taleggio cheese recipes.
- Havarti Cheese. Lastly, we have this semi-soft variety from Denmark. It’s a great option for those who can’t stand the pungent smell of Taleggio and its subsequent substitutes. It releases a buttery aroma complemented with another combination of slightly acidic, sweet and buttery flavors.
Tips on Using Replacements for Taleggio Cheese
- Flavor Balance
It’s difficult to find a substitute that perfectly matches Taleggio cheese flavors, but whatever you use has to at least mimic the straightforward flavors. To some extent, you might have to combine different varieties to achieve Taleggio’s powerful profile or somehow double the quantities used to get the best results.
The reason why we have a varieties of cheese substitutes outlined is so that you get the right option for the specific recipe you have at hand. This somehow traces back to the flavor profile and tasting notes which have to be in harmony with the dish you’re making. What often saves the day is the flexible types because with them you can always hack different recipes with a single block of cheese.
- Melting Ability.
This actually cuts across all cheese varieties, especially if it’s a recipe that needs the cheese grilled or used as toppings. As I mentioned earlier, Taleggio melts perfectly, giving you the right consistency. So ensure that your taleggio cheese substitute matches this key feature.
So, what is a good substitute for taleggio cheese? There are a number of good substitutes for Taleggio cheese that you can explore in addition to the ones we have discussed. All you have to do is get the cheese properties straight and if they happen to be a match, you can comfortably grab the variety in question as your Taleggio cheese substitute.