Cotherstone cheese is a famous semi-hard cow’s milk cheese from Cotherstone, region of England. There are two varieties of cheese in the market: white and blue –veined variety. The blue-veined variety is profoundly called “Yorkshire Stilton”. The cheese matures within 2 -10 weeks.
History of Cotherstone Cheese
This cheese is being produced since 16th century. Way back in 1600's this cheese was produced as a Wensleydale cheese and was coated with wax. The wax was coated to prolong the shelf life of the cheese. The cheese can stay fresh for about a year. During 17th century the cheese was made from Ewe's milk.
The cheese gained its present name in 1900s and its production was handled by a certain businesswoman by the name of Ms. Birkett, who made this cheese until the onset of Second World War in 1940. She helped deliver distinct identity to cheese which was distinct from its Wensleydale past. The popularity of the cheese grew due to its large shelf life. The merchants used to place copious orders during the spring and autumn. The moistness of the cheese supported the growth of green moulds. The blue green cheeses were considered prized possessions during the last century. The production of this cheese waned during the world war and was revived during the 1990s.
Physical Characteristics of Cotherstone Cheese
The cheese has a crust which resembles to Camembert and is mostly covered with yellow wax. The cheese is fine-tuned with an “open texture “like Wensleydale. It is prepared from unpasteurized cow’s milk and normally weighs 2 kg per round. But the cheese is also available in 450 grams and 900 gram rounds. The cheese is normally aged between 1-3 months during which its crust assumes pink tones from gold ones. The cheese encompasses the fat content of 45%.
Popular Cotherstone Cheese Recipes
- Blue Cheese and Pear Tart: This is one of simple but elegant amongst the Cotherstone cheese recipes. This tart is mostly teamed with cheddar cheese. It is normally served as the starter dish. Other than the Cotherstone, puff pastry, walnuts, melted butter, and salt and pepper are some of the ingredients needed for preparing the Tart.
- Apple Tart: Normally Wensleydale cheese is used in the preparation of cheese but it can be substituted with Cotherstone. Lard, cold water, salt, butter, and apple filling is used for squaring this dessert.