Friday, 22 January 2010
Stilton has to be one of my favourite cheeses. Todd likes cheddar, and I am rather fond of it myself, but Stilton is not called the King of cheeses for nothing in my opinion. To me it is rather wonderful.
That is saying a lot coming from a person that grew up on plastic fake cheese slices . . . and nothing else!
Quintessentially, Stilton is one of the true English cheeses, with it's own certification mark and it's name protected by the EU. It can only ever be made in three counties, Darbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire, and must be made from locally produced and pasteurized milk!
Also it has to be made in a cylindrical shape and must be allowed to form it's own crust. It is never to be pressed. I expect that is what helps to make it soooo crumbly and rich. I just love it's flavour. It is equally at home on a fine cheese tray or for every day use. We always have a round of it in for Christmas. I favour Cropwell Bishop myself, but then again . . . I've never tasted any other.
We always have some leftover after the holidays and I love to come up with unique and tasty ways to use it. It is excellent in a salad, of course . . . going marvellously with pears and walnuts and vinaigrette dressings, but . . .
It's so very, very fabulous in this unique and delicious pie. I love Stilton. I love potatoes. I particularly love scalloped potatoes, and I just ADORE pie!! It only made sense to combine all three together.
You're really going to love this. Rich and tasty and a lot easier to make than one should suppose.
*Stilton and Scalloped Potato Pie*
This is quite tasty and unusual. You could serve it with some kind of meat if you wanted to, but we always just have it with a tossed salad of mixed salad greens, chopped tomato and spring onion on the side.
short crust pastry, enough for a double crusted pie
5 medium potatoes
2 1/2 ounces butter
1/2 bunch of spring onions, thinly sliced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp dry mustard powder
3 TBS flour
12 ounces whole milk
8 ounces crumbled stilton cheese
(if you are not fond of stilton you can use shredded strong cheddar)
Pre-heat the oven to 190*C/375*F. Peel the potatoes and thinly slice them into cold water. Set aside.
Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onions and saute until softened. Stir in the salt, pepper, dry mustard and flour, blending together well. Slowly whisk in the milk. Cook stirring constantly, over medium heat until thickened. Cook and stir for one minute before removing from the heat.
LIne a 9 inch pie tin with half of the pastry, which you have rolled out 1/4 inch thick. Drain the potatoes well and pat them dry.
Begin layering in the pastry lined pie dish: 1/3 of the potatoes, 1/3 of the cheese, 1/3 of the sauce. Repeat twice more.
Roll out the other half of the pastry to a round large enough to fit over the filling and 1/4 inch thick. Press the edges together, trim and flute. Pierce the top in several places to vent steam.
Cover the edges with some foil. Place on a baking tray and then bake in the heated oven for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and then bake for an additional 30 to 35 minutes, until nicely browned and the potatoes are tender. Let sit for 10 minutes before cutting into wedges to serve.