Sunday, 30 November 2014

Shropshire Blue & Raisin Biscuits

I got my 10th post in for the month!  Phew.  I used to do around 15 posts a month, now I'm just trying to do at least 10, and even with these 10, like what, only half are recipes?  My God.  Stressful times.  I go to culinary school, I'm in school 40 hours a week cooking, cooking things that I'm not allowed to share online, and when I'm home the lighting's not good enough because of the shortened days.  Happy Belly really is my only motivation to cook now. 
Maybe December will be better as I'll be on holiday, I'll be back home, so no more forced cooking.  I really am the last person you'd expect in the world to not enjoy culinary school.  Maybe it's just the time of the year with the winter blues kicking in.  I should invest in a SAD lamp. 
Let's move onto a happier subject.  Cheese, blue cheese, wonderful British blue cheese.  Shropshire Blue - a beautiful orange cheese speckled with blue veins, it's soft, sharp and strong.  I love it as it's got real character.  I first encountered it in a tasting menu at The Kitchin.  A lovely server in an apron came with the cheese trolly and recommended the Shropshire Blue, and oh, both the man and the cheese made an impression.  Something about men and aprons and cheeses.  I love men that work in delis, especially.

I had a lot of this Shropshire Blue at home and so I made biscuits with them, and I love sweet and savory so I added raisins.  These are very cheesy, quite strong, really rich.  Good stuff. 

Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart
makes about 30
100g (3/4 cup) plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup raisin, soaked in warm water and drained, then roughly chopped
30g cold butter, cubed
110g Shropshire Blue or other blue cheese

Mix the flour, salt and baking soda in a large bowl.  With your hands, rub in the flour until it's sand-like.  Then mix in the crumbled blue cheese and work it until it forms a paste and then work in the raisins.  Form into a cylinder and wrap in greaseproof paper.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 180C.  Slice the dough into 1cm pieces.  Put on a greased and lined baking tray, a couple of cm apart from each other.  Bake for about 15 minutes or until they're firm to the touch. 

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