Can these plant-based alternatives win over traditional cheese lovers?
By Ann Trieger Kurland Globe Correspondent,Updated October 13, 2020, 12:00 p.m.
Rind's vegan cheese.
The bloomy, French-style Cambleu from the company Rind makes a striking centerpiece for a cheeseboard. Resembling a Camembert, but with dark bleu veins running through its rind, like a blue cheese, this cheese’s interior is soft, buttery, and yeasty. You might not guess by its appearance that the wedge is actually plant-based and vegan. Brooklyn entrepreneurs Joshua Katcher and Dina DiCenso founded the business three years ago. They use a proprietary blend, which includes cashews, tofu, plant-based milk and cultures, to craft the creamy base that the cheese makers transform into large wheels using European techniques. “We started Rind because we were lovers of French-style cheese before we were vegan. There was a need for robust, complex vegan cheese that would win over cheese-lovers and exceed expectations,” said Katcher. Ethical and environmental concerns were also a factor, they say. The company offers several other varieties: a vegan Bleu, with a deep moldy rind, as well as several variations on their Cambleu. Lapsang souchong tea leaves infuse smoky and floral flavors in one; another is layered with porcini mushroom dust, which ratchets up its umami and nutty flavors. Smoked paprika lends a smoky, sweet taste to one other (4.5 and 7.8-ounce wedges; $9.49 to $20). All are aged up to a month. Any wedge could intrigue a cheese-lover. Available at veganessentials.com.
ANN TRIEGER KURLAND
Ann Trieger Kurland can be reached at email@example.com.