Thursday, December 3, 2009

Lancashire - Three Milkings and Some Butter!

When is a blue cheese not a blue cheese?  When it's Lancashire.  Duh.  Or not.

I was looking for something fun from England - I didn't really want Cheddar, and I've had plenty of Blues for a while.  What to do?  So I went to Andrew's Cheese (again) and got the hook up with this Lancashire.  It's a creamy white cheese with a cool blue streak through it.  I guess that some people think that streak is a bad thing, because the cheesemonger was very quick to let me know that it wasn't really a "flaw," but something that comes with the territory for artisinal  cheese.  I think it makes it kind of cool.

Anyway, I love surprises, and this was a good one!  Lancashire has a nice tangy flavor with maybe a hint of lemon and a nice creamy crumble.  The flavor really hits in the back of your mouth if you break off a chunk.  "They" call it a butter crumble, and that's a pretty good description.  Each little bit that crumbles off is so soft and creamy.  What an interesting texture!  I think it may also be called a butter crumble because the cheese is rubbed in butter to protect it during the aging process.

Additionally, this cheese is made from milk collected over three days - an homage to the old days when a farmer might only have one cow, and it might take three days to get together enough milk  to make a cheese.  This might be where some of the tang comes from.  There's a great website devoted to Lancashire cheese, if' you're looking for something else to kill a few minutes on the internets.

While this was great on a cheese plate, it did cause a little confusion (Friend - Can you make me up a cracker with some of the blue cheese?  Me - Oh, this great Berkshire Blue?  Friend - No, the other one.  Me - That's not blue cheese, but it's tasty!  Friend - Really?  Ok.  I'll try that!  Oooooh Yum!).  I think it might actually make amazing cheese toast.   Mmmmm.  I've got a little hunk of this left.  That may be tomorrow nights dinner.  Darling Husband if you're reading - don't take this one in to school tomorrow!

1 comment:

  1. I went looking for this one and came up with nothing locally :(
    I did find a Shropshire (sp) that looked like bleu but was yellowish orange rather than white. Any advice on that one?