Stilton – King of English Cheese!

Leicestershire is famous for the quintessentially English, and potent, Stilton blue cheese!

Stilton’s unique flavour makes it a great addition to a cheese board, but you shouldn’t underestimate what it can do in terms of perking up everyday recipes! So we thought we’d give you a trio of Stilton recipes to show you how versatile this magical blue veined cheese is. Check out the following stilton-infused starter, main and dessert recipes – it works all 3 ways!

CHEESY RECIPES

Starter: Stilton Stuffed Mushrooms with Herb Butter

Serves: 4

Ingredients
• 125g/4oz butter
• 5 shallots finely chopped
• 5oz/150g white bread crumbs
• 125g/4oz blue Stilton cheese 1 tbsp freshly chopped sage
• 2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
• 300g/11oz open cap mushrooms

Method
1. Preheat oven to 170°C. Melt butter in a saucepan, add the shallots and soften for 3-4 minutes.

2. Place the bread in a food processor and reduce to crumbs. Add the softened shallots, Stilton and herbs. Process briefly until well combined.

3. Remove the stems from the mushrooms, then press the stuffing lightly into the caps. Place on a baking tray and bake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes.

Main: Speedy Stilton Pizza

Serves: 4

Ingredients
For the base:
• 1 x 290g pizza dough
• 2 tablespoons black olives pitted and roughly chopped
OR
• A ready-made 12 inch pizza base (see pack for cooking times)

For the topping:
• 6 tablespoons passata (or 6 tablespoons of tomato puree mixed with 1 tablespoon of water)
• 2 tablespoons green pesto (optional)
• 175g/6 oz blue Stilton cheese
• 250g/8 oz fresh spinach, washed
• 1 red onion, sliced
• And any other toppings of your choice – go crazy!

Method
1. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Put the dough mix and chopped olives into a bowl and stir together. Add enough hand hot water (about 7 fl oz) to make a firm dough. Knead for 5 minutes.

2. Roll out to a 30 cm (12 in) circle and place on baking sheet. Leave to rise in a warm place for 10 minutes.

3. Wash and remove any tough stalks from the spinach. Place in a colander and steam over a pan of simmering water for 2-3 minutes, until just wilted. Cold rinse and squeeze out excess liquid.

4. Mix the passata with the green pesto and spread over the pizza dough. Arrange the spinach on top and scatter the onions over, and any other topping things you want.

5. Crumble the Stilton cheese over the top and cook for 25-30 minutes, until the dough has risen and browned and the cheese melted.

Dessert: Stilton Cheesecake

Ingredients
• 225g/8oz English Blue Stilton
• 2 x 225g/8oz packets cream cheese
• 3 eggs
• 110g/4oz sugar
• 25g/1oz flour
• 250ml/8floz sour cream
• 2 tablespoons dry vermouth or lemon juice
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• 25g/1oz butter or magarine, melted
• 175g/6oz crushed ginger nut biscuits

Method
1. Set oven at 160°C. Place crumbled Stilton, sugar and cream cheese into a bowl and beat with an electric mixer until well blended. Beat in eggs, one at a time until smooth and creamy. Add vanilla. Stir in flour, sour cream and dry vermouth or lemon juice until well blended.

2. Combine melted butter and crushed biscuits in a bowl until mixed and press into the bottom of a 9-inch loose bottomed flan dish. Pour cheese mixture over the biscuit base. Bake in slow oven for about 1 hour, or until firm.

3. Turn off heat and let cake cool in oven for 1 hour. Then cool on wire rack for a further 1 hour. Cover pan with cling film and refrigerate unitl ready to serve.

4. To serve, loosen cake from side of dish with a narrow knife, remove and enjoy!

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