We are very partial to blue cheese in my house, and Stilton particurlarly, so much so that I do not remember a week when that creamy and crumbly cheese was missing from the fridge. We consider it like a must have especially in Winter, when sitting down after dinner, having some Stilton upon crackers, slices of a sharp apple, some grapes and a little glass of Port wine is just a pure treat. As an ingredient, I use Stilton a lot when a recipe requires a non-specific blue cheese, because we just love its wonderful taste.
Versatile, from its crumbly yet creamy texture, Stilton is an awesome ingredient atogether. It can be used in snacks, cocktail nibbles, starters, mains or right at the end of a dinner on its own or on a cheese platter. A traditionnal potatoes and leek soup takes a lift to Winter Wonderland by the addition of Stilton, served with Stilton and walnut scones to just go to heavenly bliss. A twist on the humble useful cocktail nibble, the Cheese Twist is to make them with Stilton to great effect. One of our favourite Starters is large Portobello mushrooms stuffed with Stilton and lemony, herby crumbs. It is simply delicious and so easy to make that I would recommand it for dinner parties with many guests. One thing we have still to try is maybe Stilton ice cream with bacon thins biscuits... That's a bit 'à la Heston Blumenthal' but hey, what do we live for, if not experimenting once in a while.
Stilton was described as the 'English Parmesan' by Daniel Defoe in 1724, yet the cheese was already known, and mentionned since the late 17th century. You can just imagine yourself back in the days, stepping out of a coach, starving, walking into 'The Bell Inn', meeting the landlord Cooper Thornhill, which would have presented you with a plater where Stilton was center stage. With the demand for the cheese growing, Thornhill sought a commercial agreement with a renowed cheese maker: Frances Pawlett. From then on, Stilton was set to be the hit of a cheese and dubbed the 'King of English Cheeses.'
This un-pressed semi-hard blue veined cheese is one I would recommand to anyone, especially cheese lovers.