"Stilton" news and stories
Shropshire Blue is the bright festive cousin of Stilton. Its bright orange color seems appropriate for the fall season, especially Halloween. It's essentially produced the same way as Stilton, except that annatto is added to the recipe making the interior orange. Shropshire Blue is even more luscious and creamy than Stilton.
The story of this cheese dates back to Scotland during the 1920s. Dennis Biggins, who actually made his living grading Cheshire cheese, created the first wheels of Shropshire Blue. Today, the cheese is produced in Nottinghamshire, England by Richard Rowlett and Billy Kevan at Colston Bassett Dairy. The cheese is aged for a minimum of 6 to 8 weeks.
Shropshire Blue pairs excellently with sliced pears, apples, and quince paste. If you're going to snack on this cheese with crackers, I suggest whole wheat crackers to balance out the striking pungency of the cheese. Similar to Stilton, it tastes exquisite with a glass of port. You can find this cheese at many different specialty food stores and cheese shops, namely Zabar's, Artisanal, Formaggio Kitchen, and Whole Foods. It sells for about $30 a pound at most stores.
Despite what years of watching Tom and Jerry may have taught me, British scientists say otherwise. Researchers at Manchester Metropolitan University have found that mice don't like cheese because they prefer foods that are high in sugar. Their diet consists mostly of grains and fruit. Interestingly enough, the study was backed by the Stilton Cheese Makers' Association.
I received the sample of the perfume made from, and in promotion of, Stilton Cheese.
The accompanying blurb says the perfume re-creates the earthy and fruity aroma of Blue Stilton cheese in a 'eminently wearable perfume'. It uses grape seed as a carrier oil and carries a 'symphony of natural base notes including Yarrow, Angelica seed, Clary Sage and Valerian'.
I have wafted the little bottle under numerous noses this week. Last night, Jeanne and Christina had a sniff, followed later in the pub by my Polish pal Lukasz and a chap we call Frenchman ('cause he is a man and, well, French). Jessica (who is German, not that it matters) was there too but declined a repeat sniff as she had seen it earlier in the week. Each was receptive to indulging me and my odd little bottle. And to a man (and women) the verdict on Eau de Stilton was the same.
You couldn't make this up - a cheese producer is to release a perfume redolent of Stilton cheese!
The Stilton Cheese Makers Association (whose website is a mine of info on the cheese) has created the perfume in a bid to encourage people to eat more blue stilton as part of their STICK ON THE STILTON promotion campaign for 2006. I have just emailed the PR company for a sample...
Nigel White, from the Stilton Cheese Makers Association, comments: "Blue Stilton cheese has a very distinctive mellow aroma and our perfumier was able to capture the key essence of that scent and recreate it in what is an unusual but highly wearable perfume that we are very proud to put our name to."
The SCMA has approached television presenter Cat Deeley to be the face of Eau de Stilton and a sample has been sent to her for her consideration. OK, so we laugh but it sounds interesting don't you agree?