My latest feature in the Nottingham Post.
Unbelievably it is two years since Jamie Oliver was in town declaring that Colwick Cheese was “ a beautiful, beautiful thing”. This followed the re-emergence of a cheese that had disappeared from Nottinghamshire life since 1993.
The only current producer is Belvoir Ridge Creamery, from their farm in Leicestershire and supplying to fine-food outlets and restaurants in the area. The cheese only has a 10 day shelf life which means that it will remain another of our regional specialities.
I get mine from Deli-icious on Mapperley Top (although the website does not mention this in its list of retailers). It does list Robin Tuxford (Netherfield) Fred Hallam (Beeston) Delilah (Nottingham), No8 (West Bridgford), Burton Joyce, Wollaton, Newark, Bingham and so on.
Interestingly, Mapperley is recorded as the location of the last producer prior to stopping production in 1993. Richmond Dairy were then on Ransom Road.
I have my favourite way of serving up this most versatile of fresh cheese which comes shaped almost like a bowl.
The website claims that Nottingham locals would place all sorts of flavours into this ‘bowl’: jam, soft fruit such as strawberries, apples, or pears. Others would eat a savoury version with onion, garlic or pieces of bread. It was also combined with cream in the hollowed out bowl and locals would spoon the two together!
I buy Colwick Cheese in 80g servings which would serve two people if I was willing to share it with anyone.
I serve mine with a generous portion of walnuts and drizzle a few tablespoons of honey over it. A couple of slices of sourdough bread and there you go!
Not wishing to make too much of a local theme to this article, I can say with pride that the sourdough bread is from Hambleton Bakery in Rutland and the honey is from a little known producer, ‘Andy’s UnBeeLievable Honey’; who happens to be a friend and neighbour! The walnuts had travelled a bit further, via a German supermarket chain.
Nutritionally, I am also satisfied with my choice of lunch.
The cheese may have delivered half of my recommended intake of saturated fat, but calcium, fibre, energy, anti-oxidants and heart friendly Omega 3 make this is a healthy meal that I can claim has no added preservatives or complicated manufacturing processes.
Let’s continue to keep Colwick on the map; with a bit of help from our neighbours in Leicestershire, the Food Capital of England!