Friday, 29 June 2012

Subjective guide to British cheeses, vol. 2

Today's episode is dedicated to one of my true favourite local cheeses - Yorkshire Blue. I am sure there will be some more delicious cheeses from Yorkshire in this series, even from the same producer.


This particular cheese is being produced since 1995 however I think it is worth going back few years to introduce you to the history of Shepherds Purse. Judy Bell, farmer's wife and part time worker at osteopath's clinic came across people with diary products intolerance, especially cheese. This sparked her interest and she starter to research on this condition and this leaded her to discover that some people with lactose intolerance have less allergic reactions to sheep's milk. For years she researched different breeds of sheep and experimented with different recipes, helping on the farm and bringing her children up at the same time.

Finally in 1989 Shepherds Purse was launched and introduced ewe's milk cheese, but since then they successfully introduced many more - business has grown and became full time job, however it is still run by one family. Nowadays this cheese is available in well stocked delis and in many supermarkets.

When first launched Yorkshire Blue was first entirely cow's milk blue cheese produced in Yorkshire in last 30 years. This vegetarian cheese is a mild, soft, creamy and blue veined, with no sharp taste. It has very smooth and soft rind and smooth, pale yellow centre. Each cheese is hand made, turned every week to to ensure the consistent blue veining and creamy smooth texture. Maturing time - about 8 weeks.

Yorkshire Blue is award winning cheese and the list of awards is very impressive, i.e. Gold on World Cheese Awards 2010. 

Region: Yorkshire
Type: blue
Shape: round 
Milk: pasteurised cow's 
Rennet: vegetarian
Price: 15 punds sterling/kg 
Producent: Shepherds Purse,
Leachfield Grange, Newsham,
Thirsk, North Yorkshire YO7 4DJ


  1. Hi, its the first time I ready your food blog, like it a lot, and will follow you from now. I was googling after the name on a award winning cheese from Masham that we bought this summer on holiday in yorkshire. Do you know the name? It might be the Yorkshire Blue but I am not convinced..... Im running a food blog in Sweden (ok in swedish) and have a draft written about this cheese, just cant remember the name, do you know what it might be yorkshire blue thats from masham?

    1. Hi Elin, thanks for stopping by.

      To be honest I know Masham well for it's excellent breweries and award winning sausages. I never heard about award winning cheese from Masham, therefore I suspect you probably bought cheese produced in Hawes, North Yorkshire (roughly 25 miles away from Masham) and this is called Wensleydale cheese, they also produce excellent blue cheeses. I think it must be in every food shop in Masham, but another one could be Yorkshire Blue or Swaledale Blue, that I'm going to write about Swaledale one sooner or later. ;) Please check out my post about Wensleydale Creamery, perhaps this will be helful. All the best!

  2. I love Wensleydale cheese! I think I´ve been thru all their cheeses during holidays in england, the cheese one with strawberry/cream that we had this summer was a nice experience. I´m looking thru my pics tonight and wonder if its Yorkshire Blue anyway that we have been eating. The headache as a food blogger to always remember what you have been eating... its just that I wrote in my book it came from Masham...

  3. (spoke to my father in law tonight, it might be Yorkshire Blue, case closed)


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