Tuck into a cheesy feast

Tuck into a cheesy feast


Posted 8th Dec 2014


 

Delicious British Cheese is a natural and versatile food, so whether you are cooking a romantic dinner for two, making a quick snack, or want an easy way to give your family a healthy and economical meal, chances are there’ll be a cheese-based recipe that fits the bill. We've teamed up with the British Cheese Board to bring you a selection of tempting cheesy treats to make at home for the festive season ahead

British Brie and Asparagus Tart

Serves 6

150g fine asparagus spears, halved
Few drops vegetable oil
320g ready-rolled puff pastry sheet
200g British brie, sliced
100g roasted red peppers (from a jar), drained and sliced
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon semi-skimmed milk

1. Pre-heat the oven to 220°C/200°C Fan/Gas Mark 7. Cook the asparagus in boiling water for 3-4 minutes. While it’s cooking, lightly grease a baking sheet with the vegetable oil and unroll the puff pastry sheet onto it. Score a border of 2cm around all sides, taking care not to cut right through.
2. Drain the asparagus and rinse with cold water. Arrange on top of the pastry sheet, within the border, along with the brie and peppers. Season with black pepper. Brush the edges of the pastry with the milk.
3. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the pastry has risen and is golden brown. Serve while warm.
Tip: Another time, try the recipe with sliced soft British goat’s cheese. When asparagus is out of season, use sliced courgettes instead (there’s no need to cook them first).

 

Cheddar, Stilton and Caramelised Onion Soup

Serves 4

50g butter
3 medium brown or red onions, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons plain flour
1 litre reduced salt beef or vegetable stock
8 small slices rustic bread (such as a French stick)
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
80g mature cheddar cheese, grated
80g blue Stilton cheese, broken into chunks

1. Melt the butter in a large, heavy-based saucepan and add the onions, cooking them over a medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring often. Add the sugar and cook for another few moments to really brown them.
2. Stir in the flour, then add a little stock, stirring until combined. Gradually stir in the remaining stock, then bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook gently for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Pre-heat the grill and toast the bread on one side only.
4. Season the soup with black pepper and stir in the parsley. Ladle the soup into 4 bowls that will withstand the heat from the grill (and check that they fit under your grill).
5. Float the pieces of bread on top of the soup, toasted sides down. Sprinkle the cheddar on top and add the chunks of Stilton. Grill for 2-3 minutes until melted and bubbling. Serve at once.

 

Five-a-day Veggie Cheddar Lasagne

Serves 4

450g butternut squash, peeled and cut into chunks
1 large courgette, cut into chunks
1 red onion, cut into wedges
1 yellow or red pepper, deseeded and cut into chunks
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
12 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 small red chilli, deseeded and thinly sliced (optional)
500g jar tomato passata
8 dried lasagne sheets

For the cheese sauce:
300ml semi-skimmed milk
25g plain flour
15g butter
75g mature cheddar cheese, grated

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas Mark 6. Put the butternut squash, courgette, red onion and pepper into a large roasting tin and add the olive oil. Season and toss to coat. Roast for 25 minutes, until tender.
2. Add the cherry tomatoes and chilli (if using), then stir in the passata.
3. Tip half the vegetable mixture into a large rectangular baking dish, measuring about 25 x 20cm. Arrange 4 lasagne sheets on top. Repeat the layers.
4. To make the cheese sauce, put the milk, flour and butter into a saucepan. Heat, whisking constantly with a wire whisk until the sauce boils and thickens. Remove from the heat and add half the cheese. Stir, so that the heat of the sauce melts the cheese – there’s no need to return it to the hob. Season.
5. Pour the cheese sauce over the lasagne and sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until cooked and golden brown. Allow to stand for a few minutes, then serve.
Tip: Mature cheddar will give a delicious flavour, though use medium or mild if you prefer.

 

Melting Middle Fish Cakes

Serves 4


400g ready-made mashed potato
160g can tuna in water, drained
3 spring onions, finely chopped
50g canned or frozen sweetcorn
Freshly ground black pepper
4 x 20g chunks Red Leicester or cheddar cheese
1 egg
125g dried breadcrumbs
½ ciabatta loaf, sliced horizontally
1 tablespoon olive oil
Mixed salad leaves, to serve

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas Mark 6. Mix together the mashed potato, tuna, spring onions and sweetcorn. Season with freshly ground black pepper, then form into 4 fish cakes.
2. Press the chunks of cheese into the middle of the fish cakes and re-form them, making sure that the potato mixture covers the cheese.
3. Beat the egg in a shallow bowl with 2 tablespoons of cold water. Put the breadcrumbs onto a large plate. Dip the fish cakes into the egg, then coat them in the breadcrumbs. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden.
4. Meanwhile, pre-heat a chargrill pan or the grill. Cut each piece of ciabatta in half to give 4 pieces in total. Brush a little olive oil over the cut sides, then chargrill or grill until lightly browned. Serve each piece topped with mixed salad leaves and a fish cake.
Tip: Make the fish cakes in advance if you like – you can keep them covered and refrigerated for up to 12 hours before cooking them. For a posh fish cake, use a 418g can of red salmon instead of tuna, and use blue Stilton instead of Red Leicester or cheddar.

 

Simple Fish Pie with Cheesy Mash

Serves 4

1kg potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
150g broccoli, broken into small florets
100g frozen peas
400g fish pie mix (smoked haddock, salmon and cod or haddock chunks)
50g cooked peeled prawns, thawed if frozen
300ml tub crème fraîche
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons semi-skimmed milk
50g mature cheddar cheese, grated
50g Red Leicester cheese, grated

1. Pre-heat the oven to 190°C/170°C Fan/Gas Mark 5. Cook the potatoes in gently boiling water for 20 minutes, until tender. At the same time, cook the broccoli in gently boiling water for 4-5 minutes, adding the frozen peas for the final 2 minutes. Drain the green vegetables thoroughly.
2. Tip the fish pie mix and prawns into a baking dish and add the crème fraîche and parsley. Season with black pepper. Add the broccoli and peas and stir everything together.
3. Drain and mash the potatoes, then beat in the milk and season with pepper. Stir in most of the grated cheeses. Spoon on top of the fish mixture. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top and bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown.
Tip: Buying fish pie mix should work out cheaper than buying the fish separately – look out for it in the chill cabinet, or buy from the fish counter. You could just use one variety of cheese if you’d rather – though the combination works well for colour and flavour.

 

Twice-baked Lancashire Jackets

Serves 4

4 large baking potatoes
100g garlic and herb soft cheese
100g creamy Lancashire cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
Freshly ground black pepper
2 medium tomatoes, sliced into wedges

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas Mark 6. Prick the potatoes with a fork, then bake for about 1 hour, or until tender. Cool for a few minutes.
2. Halve the potatoes and scoop the flesh into a bowl, leaving the skins intact. Mash the potato flesh, then add the soft cheese, Lancashire cheese and chives. Season with black pepper and mix together.
3. Pile the mixture back into the potato skins. Arrange in a roasting tin or on a baking sheet, tuck in the tomato wedges, then return to the oven to heat through for about 20 minutes.
Tip: Use a couple of finely chopped spring onions instead of chives. You could use grated mature cheddar or Cheshire cheese instead of Lancashire, if you prefer. To save time, you can also use ready-baked jacket potatoes instead of starting from scratch.

 

Wensleydale Oaty Apple Crumble

Serves 6

6 Cox’s apples, peeled, cored and chopped
15g butter
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
30g sultanas
20g light muscovado sugar (or light soft brown sugar)

For the topping:
150g plain flour
75g butter
75g porridge oats
50g light muscovado sugar (or light soft brown sugar)
75g Wensleydale cheese, finely crumbled
Natural yoghurt, single cream or ice cream, to serve

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas Mark 6. Put the apples, butter and cinnamon into a saucepan with 2 tablespoons of cold water and cook over a low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the sultanas and sugar, then spoon into a baking dish.
2. For the topping, rub the flour and butter together until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs, then stir in the porridge oats, sugar and Wensleydale cheese. Scatter evenly over the fruit filling.
3. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown. Serve with natural yoghurt, single cream or ice cream.
Tip: Use Bramley apples instead of Cox’s, though you may need to add a little extra sugar. If you like, use Wensleydale cheese with apricots for an extra fruity hit.

 

To find out more about the British Cheese Board visit www.britishcheese.com 

 

 





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