When I think about cheese and how much I have ‘researched’ (read: eaten) over the years, I am consistently and pleasantly surprised when a new flavour profile, region or innovation is introduced to me. You can imagine my delight therefore when a visit to the delightful Summer Land Camel Farm sparked my attention and indeed my taste buds.
From their firm crowd favourite – a delectable Persian feta – to my personal childhood favourite – Fromage blanc, Summer Land’s range of fresh camel cheeses are not what you’d necessarily expect. Let me explain.
Camel milk is not strongly nutty, pungent, nor is it yellow in colour – all of the classic misconceptions that come to mind. It’s fresh and clean yet complex and bold. Everything I enjoy and more to keep you guessing.
FETA, FROMAGE BLANC + HALOUMI
Crossed somewhere between the flavours of a fresh goat or sheep feta, the Summer Land take is a clean, unabridged version. Smooth and soft on the palate with a creamy aftertaste and salty punch. We tried this on its own – the perfect hero – however added to a simple dish of sweet baby carrots and a little dukkah, laden with feta and a drizzle of its oil would be pure perfection!
Next the Fromage Blanc – my childhood was spent devouring this – straight from the tub on its own. To utilise it in the kitchen however, add a squeeze of lemon juice for a savoury kick otherwise mix through a little sugar and use it to accompany desserts.
Haloumi in any form is pretty much a winner, but camel’s milk haloumi grilled in a little olive oil and with a hint of chilli – oh my goodness. The texture is not rubbery like you often find but smooth – not too hard, slightly salty to the taste and absolutely delicious.
ABOUT TONY LAUNAY
Tony is co-owner and General Manager of Brisbane-based Fromage [the cow]. A full service restaurant with all offerings based around cheese, a wine bar and a glass-sided, walk-in cheese room, Fromage is the stuff of every cheese lovers’ dream. Owned by Tony, his wife Annika and his sister-in-law Briana Cicchelli, Tony brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the venue, which is a culmination of over a decade of experience, starting from his hometown in France and encompassing venues in England, Spain and Canada. Tony is currently working his way back through all 80 cheeses available at Fromage [the cow] and plans to start again in January.