The Legend Of The Roquefort Cheese

Samuel Reason - September 16th, 2019

One of the most famous blue cheeses in France and perhaps even the world is known as the Roquefort. The blue spots on the cheese are mold, but they don’t just let the cheese mold, the makers of the famous cheese actually start the process.

Roquefort is produced by adding Penicillium Roqueforti spores into the cheese, and the spores are harvested from a black loaf of bread. The mold on its own is not an appetizing sight at all, a sea of green looking nasty bacteria. Every year thousands of cheese tourists flock to the small town of Roquefort-Sur-Soulzon to discover the amazing secrets behind the blue cheese. Because if you really want to call your blue cheese Roquefort then it has to be produced in a certified cellar from the region. This is a strip of land that is only a quarter of a mile long, in fact, the village only has 600 permanent inhabitants.

So it begs the question how in the world did someone discovers that mixing moldy bread with ewe’s milk would make the delicious cheese we know today? Well, the legend has it that it was created by a young shepherd who was strongly to find love. Perched on the lonely plains of the Combalou plateau he spotted a beautiful shepherdess in the distance.

Overcome with his love he was determined to go after her hand, leaving his flock behind him, but not before he had left his meal of milk curds and rye bread in a nearby cave. Thinking that the damp and cool cave would keep his meal edible. Yet his adventure proved to be a fruitless cause, he could never track down the beautiful shepherdess and spent several days trekking in vain. When he finally returned to his leftover lunch, it was not a nice sight to see at all.

Covered in the mold it looked disgusting, but he was starving so bite into the moldy cheese anyways, and that is when the bizarre thing happened: it was delicious and butter-rich. And this is the legend of how the Roquefort was born.

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