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    Potted Stilton with Port

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    Potted Stilton with Port

    • Preparation time: 10 minutes, plus cooling
    • Total time: 10 minutes, plus cooling 10 minutes

    Serves: 6


    • 200g Stilton
    • 100g unsalted butter, softened
    • ½ tsp plain or green peppercorn Dijon mustard
    • 2 tbsp port
    • A few green peppercorns in brine, drained


    1. It wasn't just meat and fish that traditionally came in for the potting treatment. Colin Spencer, in his award-winning history, British Food (Grub Street; £15.99), reports that fresh green peas would be potted in butter for long sea voyages, which sounds rather delicious. Potted cheese is an old English delicacy, too; with some kind of alcohol usually added to the mix. This is an excellent way to make use of scraps and nuggets of cheese left over from a cheeseboard; any semi hard or hard cheese will do and you can mix several types together.
    2. To make potted Stilton, simply mash the Stilton in a bowl, add 70g of softened butter, the mustard and port and continue to stir together well. (Traditional potted cheese recipes tend to use unclarified butter, presumably because cheese, especially when it is aided by alcohol, needs less protection from spoilage than meat.) Pack into ramekins or small glass or ceramic pots with a 100-150ml capacity. Melt the remaining butter and pour over the top of the cheese to form a thin seal. Scatter with a few peppercorns and leave to set.
    3. Refrigerate for up to a week. Serve after dinner with crackers or hot, toasted rye bread, with a ripe pear alongside. Alternatively, try as a sandwich filling on wholemeal bread, augmented by plenty of crisp, bitter salad leaves to cut the richness.

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