Taleggio was on the menu for the banquet held in honor for Pope Clement VI in 1344 This is a smear-ripened Italian cheese named after the caves of Val Taleggio. It’s one of the oldest soft cheeses produced in every autumn and winter. During cheese making, the acidic milk is brought to the lab and kept on the wood shelves in the chambers as well in caves according to tradition. In order to prevent it from mould infestation, the cheese is washed with seawater once a week. The maturation takes 6 – 10 weeks forming a thin crust.
Ingredients: Milk (Cow, Goat, Buffalo or Ewe’s Milk), Salt, Starter Culture, Rennet
For allergens, please see ingredients.
Named after the valley of its origin, Taleggio has been made in the same way for centuries. Its fragrant rind is edible and stands in great contrast to the creamy interior. The combination of rind and paste is a mouthful of deliciousness
Taleggio PDO is a soft, washed rind cheese from Lombardy, Italy and it is named after Val Taleggio which is an alpine valley. Lombardy is famous for producing Gorgonzola, but this gem of a cheese is not one to be overlooked. Its PDO status means that it has to be made in the Lombardy area.
No-one is really sure why Taleggio is made in a square mould rather a circular one. But it has been made this way since it was first produced. It is believed that Taleggio dates back to the 10th Century or even before. Originally Taleggio was made by farmers in the autumn and winter months when their cows came down from their alpine pastures. It was a great way for farmers to preserve their milk. Nowadays it has become so popular that it is produced all year round.
Taleggio has a sticky, orange rind which can have a strong aroma. The soft paste within is creamy with a mild, almost fruity tang. The cheese naturally develops spores on its rind and these are a sign of its ageing process.
Taleggio is quite a young cheese which is why it retains its supple paste. The cheeses are matured on seasoned wooden shelves and are turned regularly. Unusually Taleggio is washed with seawater during its 25 day maturation period. Each cheese has four circles imprinted on its rind. Three of these contain a T and the fourth gives the number of the dairy where the cheese was made.
Taleggio melts very well and it is superb when melted through spaghetti or on a pizza. It is also great when sliced into salads but you can also enjoy it on its own.