Legend has it that blue cheese was discovered by accident in the pursuit of love. A young man, eating his lunch of bread and cheese in a cave, saw a beautiful girl and abandoned his meal to chase after her. By the time he returned to the cave months later, the milk cheese had transformed into blue cheese by harmless mould. Whether this cheesy love story is true or not is of little importance; what matters is that a new variety of cheese was born and has become a culinary icon.
Blue cheese is produced with cow, sheep, or goat milk which is then ripened with cultures of the mould “Penicillium”. In contrast to other cheese varieties such as brie or cheddar, it is easily recognised by its distinct blue or green veins throughout the body and trademark “stinky” aroma that comes from the cultivated bacteria. Roquefort (France), Gorgonzola (Italy) and Stilton (England) are some of the most well-known varieties.
Like its more conventional counterpart, blue cheese can be enjoyed with crusty bread or crackers. It also goes particularly well with honey, fig jam, pear or any quince paste which cuts through its sharp, tangy, and salty taste. Wholegrain crackers are usually better choice than water crackers to add a bit of nuttiness. Red wine is usually matched with blue cheese or blue cheese based dishes, but can go just as well with a decent fruity white or dessert wine, depending on your palate.
Blue cheese is also used widely in cooking such as salads, soup and dressing; a classic example of the latter being Buffalo wings and blue cheese dip. The dip is typically made of crumbled blue cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, milk, and a squeeze of lemon juice. The tangy and creamy dressing, accompanied by celery sticks, helps to cut through the deep fried spicy wings and has become one of the worlds’ most popular snacks.
More recently blue cheese has also been integrated into the ever-changing burger culture and replaces conventional cheeses as a gourmet substitute. Traditionally processed cheese slice, cheddar, or Swiss are the go-to cheese varieties for burgers due to their melt-ability. Blue cheese is, however, not only a more natural option, but contributes so much more to the flavour that brings out the “cheesy” side of the burger.
Some people may argue that the taste of blue cheese in burger may be too strong and overpowering. I Ate My Way Through recently had an opportunity to experience first-hand burgers made with blue cheese, collaboration between Jimmy’s Burgers and Castello Burger Blue. A new addition to the Castello family, Burger Blue is a pre-sliced, full bodied, Danish blue mould cheese. Built with this blue cheese our burger is served on toasted brioche buns with beef patty, whisky infused bacon, fig jam, sautéed mushroom, lettuce, tomato, aioli sauce and Waldorf salad. The blue cheese doesn’t steal the thunder from the meat but gives the burger another dimension of taste along with the other ingredients. Even special guest Adam Richman from cult TV program Man vs Food and now Man Finds Food agrees with us.
The fact that Castello Burger Blue is pre-sliced makes cooking much easier as blue cheese can crumble when being cut. The guys at Castello have done the hard work for us, now only your imagination is the limit in creating your own blue cheese burger. What are you waiting for?