I was cheeky when I selected the theme to this Monthly Mingle. Hope you will excuse me for that.
You see the reason I chose this theme was because I had just bought a wonderful new cookbook - Sophie's Sweet and Savory Loaves by Sophie Dudemaine. It is a fantastic cookbook and comes with my very high recommendations. It features several cakes and loaf recipes that are sorted according to the season. There is such a large variety to choose from and I was having a hard time doing that. So, I decided to make the theme for the Monthly Mingle Savory Cakes to push me to make one of the delicious cakes.
I then narrowed all my selections to a fantastic sounding loaf. A loaf with walnuts, bacon and Roquefort cheese. What I love about this book is that Sophie has combined brilliant ingredients and each loaf is a culinary artwork. So you have a cake with apples and pistachios, cake with zucchini and goat cheese, cake with asparagus and chantrelles, Foie Gras Cake (my next choice), smoked salmon cake, rice pudding cake ..... the list goes on. As the recipes are sorted according to season you can choose fresh ingredients that are in season. Just brilliant.
Savory cakes/loaves are so perfect for a light dinner with a salad or a soup or packing it as a picnic lunch. Something I am looking forward to this Spring and Summer. They make perfect bread type sides for your party buffet too.
The loaf I chose just fitted into my mood that day. I was craving for something nutty, cheesy and smoky - this loaf offered all that and more. It has a very "grown up" taste to it, as the flavor of Roquefort cheese lingers on the tongue. If you have not developed a taste for blue cheese I would recommend simply using less of the Roquefort cheese. But I do recommend everyone to give this loaf a try. For the vegetarians I suggest using some mushrooms instead of bacon.
This cheese is made from sheep's milk and is one of the world's oldest known cheeses. It was enjoyed by the Romans and was Charlemagne's favorite types of cheese. In 1411, Charles VI of France gave sole rights to the ageing of Roquefort cheese to the village of Roquefort-sur-Soulzon, and all Roquefort still must be aged in the caves there today. The blue veins are mold that originally came from the walls of the limestone caves in the south of France where the cheese is aged and ripened. Nowadays the mold is injected into the cheese to allow for even distribution. It is still aged in the same caves. All "real" Roquefort cheese have a red sheep brand on the foil label.
Roquefort has a creamy and rich texture. Taste wise it is pungent and slightly salty. The interior is creamy white dotted by the blue veins of mold and surrounded by a white rind. Roquefort can be used in a wide variety of preparations from savory breads to Canape spreads.
More on Roquefort cheese:
BBC Food Glossary
Don't forget March 15th is the last day to enter your own Savory Cakes for the Monthly Mingle.
Music while cooking:
Sunrise Avenue - Fairytale Gone Bad: New on my iPod - totally hot.
Listen to it
Album: On the Way to Wonderland
Buy at The WFLH Mall
50g Bacon - cut into small cubes
1 teaspoon sunflower oil
50g walnuts - chopped
salt and pepper
2-3 teaspoons baking powder
50ml walnut oil
50ml peanut oil
125ml milk - luke warm
100g Gruyere cheese - grated
150g Roquefort cheese
Updated: You can now easily find and buy the cheeses I used in this recipe at the WFLH Mall.
Pre-heat the oven at 180 degrees Celsius. Grease a loaf pan.
In a pan heat the sunflower oil and fry the bacon until brown and crispy. Add the walnuts, salt and peeper and continue to saute on a gentle heat for approx. 5 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool.
In a bowl mix together the flour and baking powder, add the eggs and beat well with an electric beater. Gently drizzle the oils and warm milk into the batter, beating continuously. Fold in the Gruyere cheese.
Crumble the Roquefort cheese over the bacon and walnut mixture. Mix and then add to the batter. Fold together gently.
Pour the mixture in the loaf pan and bake for approx. 45 minutes.
Vegetarian tip: Use mushrooms, like porcini or chantrelles instead of the bacon.
Like I said above a very grown up tasting loaf. Powerful from the Roquefort, nutty from the walnuts and smoky from the bacon. It is amazingly moist and soft. We had a side of fresh mixed salad with this and it was just the perfect dinner. For Soeren the Roquefort cheese taste was somewhat piquant and I think he will need to develop the taste for this. But he still ate one slice with relish.
Tom loves cheese and a good Roquefort is on top of his list. This was a great success with him.
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