Tag Archives: organic

St Tola Ash Log

With the faint promise of spring hanging in the air, it seemed only right that the first cheese out of the Pong Cheese Irish Selection Box should be the goat’s cheese. It’s at this time of year that fresh goat and ewe’s milk cheeses start to proliferate after a winter break when the animals tend not to give milk. As with the other cheeses in the box, St Tola is not shy and retiring, in appearance or taste:

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High Weald Halloumi

I once got to be a cheese judge at a proper cheese show. I didn’t write about it at the time because I was a (very) last minute stand-in and so felt like a bit of a fraud. Plus, I didn’t take any photos because I was too busy trying to appear competent. I learned a lot that day but most of all I learned that tasting more than a dozen, uncooked, salty varieties of halloumi is not in any way a pleasant task. So, I present today’s cheese grilled and garnished, rather than in its raw and naked state. Any other way still makes me shudder.

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Brewer’s Gold

I’ve been cooking with a lot of cheeses recently but haven’t had much time to scout out new ones. So, when I saw that my veg box supplier had added a new cheese to its catalogue, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to sound it out.

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Caws Llain and Lancych Mature

Well, no-one can say that I didn’t get my cheese-worth from my recent ramble around West Wales. Following last week’s Visit to Caws Teifi and the previous post about Y-Fenni, I am back this week with a double bill of Welsh cheesiness from the Caws Cenarth cheesemakers. My eldest son and I visited the farm and watched the cheesemakers in action from the purpose-built viewing room. It’s a great way to see the process, although I felt a bit sorry for them – what if they fancy talking to themselves or scratching their bottom? We chose today’s cheese through the simple process of: we’ll taste everything we can get our hands on in the farm shop and then you can choose one to buy and I’ll choose one. Caws Llain (top picture) is my choice and Lancych Mature (bottom) is my offspring’s:

Caws Llain Caws Cenarth

Lancych Mature

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Stichelton

Stichelton is one of those cheeses that gets talked about a lot in cheese-world but it’s fair to say that most people, living sadly in un-cheese-world, won’t know the name (although if they heard it they might stop, ponder and perhaps think ‘Hmm, sounds a bit like another blue cheese…’) Stichelton is a cheese with an interesting genesis. It’s a bit of a rebel cheese; the sort of cheese that would skive off cross-country running and go for a fag instead. But it’s that sad kind of rebel that tried to hang out with its peers but was shunned for being ‘a bit different’:

Here it is, looking rebellious and a bit sulky:

stichelton cheese
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Pumpkin, Whitmore Ewe’s Cheese and Sage Tart

pumpkin sage and whitmore sheep's cheese tart

It would have been perfect timing for me to post up this recipe last week. The pumpkin would have been a shoe-in for Halloween and last month’s Cheese, Please! theme was hard sheep’s cheese. But last week saw me on a remote sheep farm in the Peak District with inadequate Wi-Fi, trying not to shout at to entertain two small boisterous children and fashion firelighters from old copies of the Farmer’s Guardian. It was a remote and beautiful place and if I ever have a mid-life crisis and decide to become a cheese-maker, I think I will move there and make a nice mountain sheep’s cheese.
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Millstone

I choose a cheese to write about in a myriad of different ways. Some I hunt out because I’ve heard great things about them or because they have an intriguing history. Some are given to me by travelling friends. Some I panic buy at the last minute because I’ve just remembered. But this week’s cheese is the first that I’ve bought because I was amused by the fact that it looks like its name.
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Eight Cheeses in One Day…

I love my Fromage Friday adventures but have to admit I’ve been getting impatient. There are so many cheeses I’ve heard about and want to try but there are only so many cheese purchases my hips and thighs can tolerate in one week. A tasting at Leadenhall Cheese back in July introduced me to some new cheeses in more pocket-size portions and so when I saw an event advertised at one of my local delicatessens, Cannon and Cannon, I jumped at the chance (and then did a few more star-jumps, just to build up a nice calorie deficit to be filled by cheese).
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Mex in the City: Gringa Dairy

Since starting this blog, I’ve been looking forward to meeting my first proper cheese-maker. Whenever I imagined it, I was usually welly-clad in a field, perhaps with the early morning mist floating over the grass as some cows lumbered into the dairy. It’s fair to say that my fromager fantasies didn’t look much like this:

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Looking more Albert Square than Ambridge, Gringa Dairy is situated under a railway arch in Peckham, South London. Peckham has a reputation for being bad-ass rather than bucolic but, beyond the ‘don’t go there or you’ll get stabbed’ tabloid headlines, it boasts an eclectic food scene that encompasses events like KERB, restaurants like Peckham Refreshment Rooms and producers such as new craft brewers Brick. Another new kid on the block, Gringa Dairy was founded by American Kristen Schnepp and makes artisan Mexican cheese.
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Alham Wood Junas

Mention British farm animals to most people and they’ll conjure up an image of green fields trimmed with hedgerows, black and white cows grazing the grass and chewing the cud. Or maybe fluffy sheep cropping the sparse vegetation on a mountainside. At a push, perhaps some cheeky goats in their perennial eating-the-washing-line stance. What they probably won’t come up with is a herd of black water buffalo, great horns curling over their horizontal ears. But that’s exactly where this week’s cheese comes from. And the buffalo aren’t paddling in the floodplains of Pakistan or India; they’re grazing the pastures of Somerset.
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