Crédit Photo : Utopia

La Marmite Végétale, more real than nature cheeses

La Marmite Végétale was born from a dream, that of Carole Aguilhon who saw herself becoming a cheesemaker. Passionate about this product, she ended up declaring lactose intolerance. After several years of reflection, Carole decides to pursue her project in the form of vegetable cheeses.

The result of a long-standing work, La Marmite Végétale was created in April 2017 in Vallauris, in the Alpes-Maritimes department.

The adventure begins with the purchase of a book dedicated to the maturing and manufacturing of dairy cheeses. Carole hastens to read it in order to learn how to use traditional techniques. Her goal? To produce cheeses similar in every way to their dairy counterparts. After months of studying plant ferments, texture and different cheese techniques – and several failed attempts – Carole finally manages to reproduce the consistency and taste of the cheeses she loved so much.

She is now able to recreate the texture of a real Camembert or a blue cheese, a cheese extremely complicated to imitate given the technical knowledge and the material required for its manufacture. Today, Carole is very proud to produce plant-based cheeses with character.

A committed approach

Carole’s commitment is threefold: it comes from both a health approach with the aim of offering an alternative to people who are lactose intolerant or who wish to reduce the consumption of dairy products, and a desire to encourage local and organic production. But it comes also from strong sensitivity to the animal cause.

Her mission is, according to her, to inform and not to convince. It is part of a supportive approach to help people to consume in a more reasonable and reasoned way. With this in mind, almost all of La Marmite Végétale’s products are organic and zero waste.

In the vegetable cheese department, I ask …

Cheeses are obviously one of the flagship products of La Marmite Végétale. In the range of “refined” cheese are:

  • The Black Goat, a “goat” with a strong taste
  • White/blue, a harmonious blend of a flowery rind and a nice touch of blue
Photo credit: La Marmite Végétale

As well as two new features:

  • La Mignonnette, a small log with a thin crust that is both soft and creamy with a delicate taste of “goat cheese”
  • The Creamy Garlic with roasted flavours.

To vary the flavours, let yourself be tempted by the range of cashew veggies like Vegg’Mozza, Camemberts or a good “raklette”. The success is such that we are snapping up its products throughout France!

Photo credit: La Marmite Végétale

A catering corner and cooking workshops

It is not only in the cheese section that we come to eat at La Marmite. For Carole, everything can be vegetalized and she loves to reproduce the great classics of French cuisine. Eager to pass on her love for plant-based cuisine, Carole runs culinary workshops. The idea is to present the basic ingredients (tofu, proteins and soybeans, legumes, etc.) and to highlight them through specific themes.

But beware, there is no question of a “show” here, explains Carole. It is more about sharing and helping each other. We start with a breakfast in order to make the presentations, then the apprentice cooks get to work. Carole’s role is simply to support and answer questions so that everyone can make the recipe at home. At the end of the workshop, all participants taste their meal together in the greatest conviviality. They leave with a nice folder made up of recipes and guides tu use the different plant ingredients. 

La Rozzatella prepared by Utopia (vegan restaurant in Nice) – Photo credit: La Marmite Végétale

Gourmets can also have a great time in the catering department. On the menu are all kinds of pâtés, faux foie gras, quiches, puff pastry, couscous, risottos… What’s new at the moment? Carole has just started a collaboration with Les nouvelles fermiers, a new brand specialized in French meat substitutes, to be found in the catering department or to be taken away for cooking at home. On the menu: homemade burgers, chicken aiguillettes, nuggets, steaks…

Keep an eye out, La Marmite Végétale will soon be opening a grocery store with many plant-based nuggets!

Writer: Alice Gren –

Translated by Malvika Kathpal

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