I recently read an article about blended cheeses and how some people regarded them as being, shall we say, a little dubious. Cheese purists say that cheese should be cheese and not have ‘bits’ in it. I have to admit I fall into this camp, though we do make blended cheese for sale in our Little Cheese Shop.
There is another quality aspect to blended cheeses in that the vast majority are made not from first
grade cheese, but from slightly less good quality which is then chopped in a bowl chopper – an industrial type of mincer, the ‘bits’ added and then extruded.
The article I read talked about the other way of making blended cheeses and that is to take curd from a normal Wensleydale make from the vat, mix the ‘bits’ in and press it as normal. This is what we do. As mentioned, we make our blendeds primarily for our Little Cheese Shop, though we do have a customer who takes our Original Goat with Cranberry.
On Friday of last week, in preparation for Easter, we made a small batch of Wensleydale with cranberry which sells really well in the shop, some Wensleydale with cracked black pepper, garlic and
parley, Wensleydale with ginger and Wensleydale with pineapple plus two new cheeses: Wensleydale with chive and onion and Wensleydale with rosemary and thyme. I have to say that both were surprisingly tasty and both Stu and I thought that the chive and onion tasted like Pringles and the one with rosemary and thyme was delicate with a balance of both flavours. They are in the shop now for sale and doing well.
Our Wensleydale with cranberry is probably the best selling blended cheese, followed by garlic and parsley, ginger and cracked black pepper.