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Sunday, March 13, 2011

Are We Blue? Oh, Yeah!

A few years ago Greg had to go to Newton, Iowa for several days for work. During his time there he visited the Maytag Dairy Farms store and was able to sample several kinds of cheese. He brought home a few samples for us, not the least of which was the blue cheese.
Maytag Blue Cheese is made from homogenized cow’s milk as opposed to the usual sheep’s milk. You can read about the process here. It is sharp and pungent, and so flavorful.
Along with the cheese sample, Greg also brought home a handout from the store with recipes for using their product. I glanced at them, then tucked the handout into my recipe binder and left it for “someday”. In the meantime, we used the blue cheese to top grilled steaks, to sprinkle into salads, and sliced with a drizzle of honey to go with our wine. And it was good – really good. Then on Food Network there was a chef using wedges of iceberg lettuce with blue cheese dressing as their salad course and I thought that looked pretty tasty.
About that same time I went through the recipe binders and came across the old handout. I happened to have a small wedge of Maytag Blue Cheese in the frig, so on Saturday I picked up a head of lettuce, then that afternoon, handed the paper to Greg and told him to choose which of the three recipes for blue cheese dressing he wanted me to make. I think he must’ve chosen the best one because it is thick and rich and tastes just like what you get at Chances R and PK’s. YUM!
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Here you go, straight from Maytag Dairy Farms:
“Maytag Blue Cheese Dressing”
Place in mixing bowl:
1 C sour cream (I actually used part light sour cream and part homemade yogurt)
½ tsp. dry mustard
½ tsp. black pepper (fresh ground would be best)
scant 1/3 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
Blend two minutes at low speed (I used a hand mixer). Add 1 1/3 C mayonnaise (NOT SALAD DRESSING); blend 30 seconds at low speed to mix, then blend two minutes at medium speed. Crumble 8 ounces Maytag Blue Cheese; add half to blended mixture; blend well at low speed. Add rest of crumbles, stir in by hand. Refrigerate 24 hours before using. Yield: 3 Cups
Since my wedge of cheese was only 4 ounces, I halved this recipe. We went ahead and ate some of this about an hour and a half after I made it, and it was good. We ate some tonight, 24 hours later, and it was amazing! It had thickened up noticeably and the flavor was much stronger.
Okay, now that I showed you how delicious it looks, and given you the recipe, I’ll give you the bad news. Maytag Blue Cheese is expen$ive and it’s not easy to find. Every now and then our local WalMart has the foil wrapped wedges. Usually we pick it up when we’re at a HyVee in either Lincoln or Grand Island. It is not something I usually have in the frig, rather a splurge for every once in awhile. I was looking forward to grilling steaks in the near future, so that’s why I had picked up a 4 oz. wedge a couple of weeks ago.
We’re having a big family spaghetti dinner next weekend with all of my siblings and most of our kids. I plan to offer a big bowl of salad to go along with the pasta, and with the salad, we’ll be having homemade blue cheese dressing. Yeah, we’ll use Maytag, this one time. Cuz I love ‘em and want to share the deliciousness.
Now to find a homemade Ranch recipe we love…

2 comments:

Melanie said...

Looks & sounds delicious! The calories don't count though, right? :-)

Seriously though, homemade dressings are so much better than the store-bought ones & most of them are filled with chemicals anyway.

Penny Ann said...

I've been making my own blue cheese for years and much prefer homemade to the bought. My recipe is very similar to yours. I'll look for Maytag blue cheese and see if I can find any of it.