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Our guest blogger today is Svetlana, who is known as The Cheese Lady. Based in Haddington, the cheeses she uses are inspired by the places she's travelled to. With a vision to inspire joyful and mindful eating, she showcases the most beautiful farmhouse and artisan cheese.
I am from Russia and as a child I always remember having a big three litre jar of honey in the house. My grandad was a bee keeper and it was one of the few sweet treats a Soviet child could easily have. Back then honey was thought of as a superfood and we consumed loads of it. I now jokingly say it runs in my veins.
As I got older, my love affair with honey only deepened, as I discovered other unique honeys from around the globe. The endless variety of textures, tastes and flavours never seizes to fascinate me.
My other passion – Farmhouse and Artisan cheese (aka Fine Cheese) is especially enjoyable when married with honey. They are both delicious, great for you separately, but are even more amazing when enjoyed at the same time. In Britain, for many people pairing cheese and honey seems like a novel and maybe even a strange idea. However, in the rest of Europe (countries like France, Italy and Greece) people have been enjoying cheese with honey for many centuries, if not millennia.
For me, the cheese-honey duo is appropriate at almost any time of the day, but if you want to enjoy them for breakfast then the best cheeses would be young creamy milky ones, such as Ricotta, Cottage Cheese and even Burrata. When drizzled with runny honey they gain another beautiful flavour, as well as a whole bunch of health-enriching properties.
During the day, it's best to go for slightly more mature and more intense flavoured cheeses like La Tur, Selles-sur-Cher and Gorgonzola Dolce. A scoop or drizzle of honey or cracker is a delicious treat after a leisurely brunch or lunch. If, like me, you prefer harder cheeses, like Pecorino or cheddar, I'd recommend going for set honey, like Scottish Heather Honey (which has recently been
confirmed to be an actual superfood- How incredible is that!)
At night, I would suggest serving your “big-hitters”, particularly if the cheeseboard is the last course of the meal. Strong flavoured cheeses like, Isle of Mull, Fiore Sardo or Comte, as well as blues like Roquefort and Stilton, they would all pair with honey perfectly. The intense sweetness mellows out the big character of the cheese, creating a match that is made in heaven.
Many people ask if I would suggest runny honey or set honey for these cheeses. The choice is actually yours – either one will work beautifully, however, to find your own perfect combination, I'd encourage a lot of experimentation - try to your heart's content!
I hope I have given you some good ideas and have encourages you to try these two amazing foods together. When you do, make sure you savour every single bite joyfully... and mindfully!