1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

British Cheeses

Discussion in 'Cookery' started by nick909, Apr 20, 2011.

  1. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    With no offence intended to forum users from other countries - cheeses from other European countries are very well represented already in the UK - the cheese section in most supermarkets having far more foreign cheeses than British, which normally just include about 12 different types of Cheddar from all over the UK (although I'm guessing that will change soon, with the advent of its gaining of PDO status), a Stilton or two, some sweaty looking Red Leicester and a few of those bizarrely flavoured cheeses with lumps of cranberry or chilli or whatever in them.
    Nothing wrong with a good Cheddar or course, nor Stilton (although I've never seen the point in Red Leicester, and those flavoured cheeses are an abomination), but there are so many great British cheeses that never seem to make the shelves - there are at least as many as, if not more, British cheeses than French, so why don't we know of more?
    Off the top of my head - the tangy and crumbly Caerphilly; the nutty, buttery Mrs Appleby's Cheshire; the creamy, full flavoured Barkham Blue and the pungent, oozing Stinking Bishop. All wonderful, all underrepresented in most people's diets.
    So - what cheeses do you love that slip under most people's radars? Do you have a favourite local cheese that needs celebrating?
    I'll start with the Tunworth Soft Cheese from locally to me (and I suspect, Henriette) in Hampshire. Soft, creamy and rich - it's wonderful and easily as good as any foreign equivalent.
    Anyone else?
  2. henriette

    henriette New commenter

  3. King Richard III cheese from artisan dairy in Wensleydale is gorgeous - nutty, creamy, rangy and perfect with crackers and decent chilli jam.
  4. Apologies- Www.kingrichardiiicheese.co.uk
  5. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    My experience of French supermarkets has been that they too are unrepresentative of the diverse range of cheeses that France has. We took quite a lot of holidays in the South of France, usually making the drive there and back over several days to get to see and experience more of the country. Everywhere we stayed offered a brilliant range of local cheeses to end our meals, but you would never be able to find anything quite like them in the supermarkets.
    I suspect that because we have a vastly different restaurant/hotel culture in the uk to that of France and aren't given much variety on the cheeseboard when it's available, our local cheeses don't get as much opportunity to be tried as they deserve.
    There is another matter of the British obsession with observation of EU policy that makes it harder for small cheese producers to flourish. At one time I employed a lad who's parents had a smallholding where they kept rare breeds of goats cows and pigs. As an aside, their view was it takes the same amount of trouble to look after any goat as it does to look after a rare breed, so why do your bit to keep the lesser known animals around?
    Anyway, their smallholding was mostly intended to be a hobby that assisted with self-sufficiency but the surplus of goats milk allowed them to make cheese that they sold to the locals. One day they had a visit from a food inspection agency that said they would either need to to convert their smallholding to a stainless steel clad factory or cease production, which they did, feeding the milk to the pigs instead.
    Ironically, the week the lad told us about this, Keith Floyd was on the telly showing us an Italian cheesemaker going about his business. The day started with the cheesemaker visiting farms where outside the gate some milk churns awaited. He would dip his hand in the churn, taste the cream in the milk and decide if it was suitable for his cheese and if so, would load it onto his 3 wheeled truck to take back to his rudimentary shed where he made his cheese. Floyd said it was a brilliant cheese.
    If I can find a clip of this episode on youtube I'll post it.
  6. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    I've yet to learn the names of the local ones I have been trying. The town that we are due to move to in a few months has a fabulous deli with a range of local cheeses. We have popped in a couple of times and tried a different one each time.
    I loved the local soft goats cheese and the brie of the ones we have tried. I will have to learn names. These are all from Worcestershire.
  7. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Interesting insight there, modelmaker, thanks for posting. It had never ocurred to me that French supermarkets stock as few varieties of cheese as British ones, but I'd say you're spot on there. What would interest me is whether the average French person could name any British cheeses. I suspect not.
  8. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    One of my favourite things to do - sample a locl cheese and buy one to take home!
    Thanks for the suggestions so far, everyone.
  9. anon468

    anon468 New commenter

  10. BelleDuJour

    BelleDuJour Star commenter

    Stinking Bishop is my fave!
  11. lilachardy

    lilachardy Star commenter

    A local cheese - the Yarg.
  12. Lancashire crumbly - as bought from the market stall in Accrington
  13. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

    I like Cornish Yarg and Bowland. Bowland is the only cheese with "bits" in it that I like. I met it when I ordered a Ploughman's in Cheshire a few years back and was horrified when it came to see the cheese had cinnamon and dried fruit in it- but it was lovely. A real surprise. Can't get it up here though, other than in the specialist cheesemonger's in the Big Smoke.
    For everyday, I buy local island cheddars. The strong kind that make your tongue tingle!
  14. Si N. Tiffick

    Si N. Tiffick Occasional commenter

    Oh, and I never understood the point of Red Leicester either. Or mild cheddars. I'm quite partial to a bit of proper farmhouse Double Gloucester, though.
  15. We don't seem to have any local cheeses but then neither do we have fishmongers or green grocers and our farmers' market is pretty pathetic when it does happen once a month. We do have 2 independent butchers but I am in a reasonable sized town.
    Some fab cheeses I do like though are Black Bomber (a deliciously strong welsh cheddar), applewood and oakwood smoked cheddars and I once came accross a lovely hard goats cheese washed in red wine in Waitrose and I'm not normally a fan of goats cheese. I'm sure you can get these anywhere though - as I say we seem have a distinct lack of local porducers or outlets for local food.
  16. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Yarg and Spenwood are indeed ace, and Black Bomber is great - in fact Mrs909 has claimed it to be her favourite cheese many times, although she changes her mind quite often. RW - if you like BB, try Godminster - a very similar cheese, that just has the edge on BB, for me.
    I'll try Bowman if I see it, Si. And yes, Double Gloucester can be great.
    A commercial cheddar we've had a few times recently is called Tickler - it's a slightly crumbly cheddar with the crumbly crystaline texture that I prefer from a cheddar rather than the creamier type. It's always in Tesco's.
    I love cheese, me.
  17. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    I'd forgotten Wookie Hole Cave Aged Cheddar. I bought some after we visited assuming it would just be a gimmick but it had a lovely flavour. It's hard to describe but it was very mellow and very pleasant.
  18. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Noone's mentioned Shropshire Blue. Although come to think of it I've not seen any on sale recently.
    As I'm the only one who eats blue cheese in the family and my waistline is expanding, I don't buy blue cheese as much as I would like.
  19. Black Bomber is just great! I can get mini rounds and take them to Spain - my dad loves me!
    I also love Shropshire blue but there is an Irish goat's blue, Cashel Blue, wonderful stuff!

Share This Page