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How is Blue cheese made?

Blue Cheese
Blue Cheeses

The creation of blue cheese was inspired by a combination of Mother Nature and man’s entrepreneurial spirit. Early cheesemakers stored cheeses in natural caves, stone cellars or barns. Having near constant temperatures this created a breeding ground for wild moulds and yeast, as they entered the interior through small cracks in the rind and grew in the gaps of the fresh curd. Today the blue mould is typically added to the milk in powdered form.

How they are made:

  1. After the chosen milk treatment starter is added to the milk and as the acidity rises the blue penicillin mould is sprinkled in, closely followed by rennet.

  2. The coagulated curd is then cut into cubes, the whey drained off and the remaining sloppy curd is transferred into cheese mould, with a cheese mat placed on the top and the cheese mould placed on another. The cheese mould itself has holes in the bottom and sides to allow any remaining whey to drain out.

  3. The curd is never pressed as the curd needs to allow space/ channels for mould growth. They are frequently turned (top to bottom) allowing its weight to force out any excess whey.

  4. After two or three weeks the cheese is removed from the cheese mould this is when the sides are scraped smooth to cover over any cracks before they are rubbed with salt. The cheese is returned to the humid cellars/ maturing rooms for the bacteria to break down the fats and protein in the curd to produce a smooth creamy texture.

  5. After another two or three weeks the cheese is pierced with stainless steel rods letting air into the cheese (whilst the curd is still young and crumbly) making channels allowing the blue mould now being exposed to air to grow and produce the wonderful veining

  6. The development of blue veining and texture is closely monitored. The Cheese Grader will sample/ taste the cheese and will decide if the cheese is at its best. It is at this time the cheese is wrapped and processed for market.

How to enjoy:

  • Uncooked blue cheeses are essential on any cheese platter. Hard blue cheeses also add another dimension to salads especially with walnuts and peppery rocket

  • Cooked try stirring small amounts into pasta, soups and sauces to elevate dishes. Melted toppings on steaks, burgers or mushrooms. On fresh or homemade bread, it will make the best cheese on toast you’ll ever have

Defining features:

There is a wide variety of tastes and textures but blues all have a slightly metallic tang and are saltier than other cheeses. The blue veining is colourful but packs a powerful aroma, it is best try for yourself and find the ones you like

Flavour - Some creamy and mellow, others are sweeter and more herbaceous, while high acid high moisture blues are gritty and have a salty finish.

Age - Typically considered ripe from 1-6 months

Moisture - Most blues have a moist interior which is what encourages the blue mould to develop

Texture - Blues vary greatly in texture, ranging from dense and compact to creamy and sticky

Rind - The range of rinds are from wet and sticky to rough and crusty

Colour - There are various strains of blue moulds, each of which gives the cheese its own distinct appearance

Streaks - Vary from erratic lines to deep pockets all with a contrast of colours

Now try one of our blue cheese boxes


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