Blue cheese and rosemary, what a combination.
We had some wonderful blue cheeses while in France so I decided this would be a nice little cracker to make upon coming home.
A friend made these from Ina Garten’s Paris cookbook and I loved them at first bite. Ina used Stilton in her recipe and I had thought about using a Roquefort cheese since that is from France. BUT, at our store they only carried one brand of Roquefort at $32.00 a pound. Yikes, I was not about to spend that much on a recipe I was trying out for the camera guy coming to my house that day.
So I bought another French blue cheese, D’Auvergne, which was around $16/lb and I only needed 8 ounces. This cheese is made in France and from cow’s milk which has a creamier taste than Roquefort which is made with ewe’s milk. I found this interesting — Blue d’Auvergne was created in 1854 by a producer of Roquefort. After noticing fungus on his bread, he tried to mix the same fungus with the cheese. A littler later, the farmer pierced the cheese so that the air could enter into it and help to develop the blue mould. These days the cheese is inoculated with Penicillin Roquefort. This cheese is best served at room temperature and is a perfect blue for salad dressings.
For anyone who does not know the different types of blue cheese, here’s a quick run down and I may have forgotten a few.
Roquefort is blue cheese from France
Stilton is blue cheese from England
Gorgonzola is from Italy
Cabrales comes from Spain and is a very pungent blue cheese.
Cambozola is one of my favorites. this cheese is German and they combine camembert with blue gorgonzola.
Bavarian is a mild and creamy German blue cheese.
Then you have the Irish bleu, the Danish blue, the Maytag blue which is American, and the list goes on and on.
So, when it comes to blue cheese, just choose what your pocketbook will allow.
I decided to add some rosemary to the recipe because I love the flavor with the blue cheese.
Finely chopped rosemary from my herb garden.
The butter and blue cheese gets creamed.
After you have added the flour and rosemary, divide this into two balls.
Brush egg wash over the rolls.
Roll in the chopped walnuts and then wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Slice 1/4″ thick and put on Silpat or parchment lined cookie sheets.
After baking, put on cooling rack.
Rosemary Roquefort Wafer with Walnuts
(adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe – Blue Cheese and Walnut Cracker)
1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
8 oz. blue cheese, crumbled, at room temperature
1 1/2 c. all purpose flour
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 extra-large egg beaten with 1 Tbsp. water for egg wash
1 c. roughly chopped walnuts
2 tsp. fresh rosemary, finely chopped
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and blue cheese together for 1 minute, or until smooth. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour, rosemary, salt and pepper and mix until it’s in large crumbles, about 1 minute. Add 1 tablespoon of water and mix until combined.
Dump the dough onto a floured board, press it into a ball and divide in half. Roll into a 12-inch long log.(Ina said do one roll, but that makes a really big cracker. Mine came out the size of a half dollar coin.) Brush the logs completely with the egg wash. Spread the walnuts in a square on a cutting board and roll the log back and forth in the walnuts, pressing lightly, and distributing them evenly on the outside of the log. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or for up to 4 days.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Cut the log into 1/4″ slices with a sharp knife and place the crackers on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper or Silpat. Bake for 22 minutes* until very lightly browned. Rotate the pan once during baking. Cool and serve at room temperature.
*My crackers took longer to cook. At one point I flipped them over so they would dry out a bit. I would say my crackers cooked an extra 6-10 minutes. You can taste one at the end of the cooking time to see if they are done. They do crisp up when cooled.