Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Best Buy: Cashel Blue Cheese

Beechmount Farm is an area of rolling pastureland in Fethard, South Tipperary and home to the world famous Cashel Blue Cheese. Like many early Irish farm house cheese producers, the Grubbs started making cheese as a way of adding value to their own milk. Over half of all the milk used in the production of Cashel Blue comes from their herd of Holstein Friesians with the remainder coming from nearby farms.
"One sunny summer’s day my daughter Sarah and I were watching my husband, Louis, herd his cows in from pasture. What a deliciously rich and creamy milk they gave! I started to experiment. Eventually, in 1984, I created Cashel Blue, a cheese I believe truly represents the outstanding quality of Tipperary milk".

Cashel Blue is a natural rinded blue cheese made from pasteurised cow's milk and vegetarian rennet. The cheese has a distinct soft yellow paste with a blue to green coloured mould. The young cheeses are mildly blue where the mature cheese versions depend on balance and elegance.

Cashel Blue cheese is on par with any other internationally made blue cheeses. The distinctive flavour is creamy, mildly blue and slightly acidic when young; with a good balance between creaminess and blue as the cheese matures. Over 18 weeks the blue cheese matures becoming more becomes more aggressive in flavour and more granular in texture. Cashel Blue is perfect with cheese crackers served alongside some chutney, a great addition to any cheese board and also adds great depth of flavour to steaks, burgers, green soups including broccoli, and so much more.

Cashel Blue produce a second variation of cheese known as Crozier Blue which is made from pasteurised sheep's milk with a natural rind and a greyish green mould. The paste becomes chalkier in texture towards the centre of the wheel. It is very simular in appearance to Cashel Blue, but a whiter paste owing to the sheep's milk mould. Crozier Blue is released from 3 months of age and is available all year round.

The Cashel Blue range is available across Ireland in a number of supermarkets, food markets and many artisan food stores internationally.