After nearly four months of aging in the less than stellar cheese-curing confines of my refrigerator, it was time to test the Cotswold produced during a Three Points Ohio road trip. Our host, Kate’s sister Kim, had warned that she tends to label her cheese as Cotswold-like or cheddar-like, because so many variables—from weather to quality of the cream to conditions of the kitchen—can affect the outcome. For instance, Kim bakes a lot of bread, and has to be careful not to do so on a cheesemaking day, because the yeasts can cross-pollinate.
Now we know what she means. Our Cotswold, typically a cheddar-style cheese with chive flavoring, had suspicious looking veining and a taste that rang distinctly of blue cheese. Our cheesemaking marathon, during which we had the Cotswold pressing nearby as we mixed a batch of Gorgonzola, seems to have resulted in a hybrid we can only call Cotszola. It wasn’t an especially delicious combination, but it wasn’t exactly horrible either. Perhaps with more properly controlled temperature and humidity during aging it could have developed into something more interesting.
As is, Wilma the cat loved it, and if any foodstuff passes the finicky feline palate, at least you can be sure it won’t kill you.