Manor Farm Shop in Leasingham, England, is currently selling one of the weirdest cheeses in the world – Char Coal Cheese. And true to its name, it’s actually made with real charcoal. These jet-black blocks might not look (or sound) very appetizing, but they seem to be a huge hit with cheese lovers. In fact, the shop’s staff say that people have been coming back for more ever since they introduced the bizarre delicacy
“It’s a mature cheddar but it’s completely black inside where it’s mixed with the charcoal but it tastes really creamy,” said Dan Mansfield, assistant manager at Manor Farm. “The company we get some of our cheese supplies from said they had got this new cheese in stock and it was made from charcoal so we thought we’d give it a try. I’d never heard of it before and it doesn’t look very appetizing, but it is very nice. We’ve had a sample block cut up in the shop for customers to try and so far everyone who has tried it has bought a whole block.”
The idea of combining charcoal and cheese is so unusual that I wonder how anyone thought of it in the first place. Amy Birkin from Michael Lee Fine Cheeses (the creators of charcoal cheese), said: “We toyed with the idea of making a black cheese and how we could make this look appealing.” And when they came to know of the various mining communities around them that needed support, they found their ‘black ingredient’.
The company then created what they claim is the first and only all-black charcoal cheddar cheese, made with mature cheddar and blended with activated charcoal. For their outstanding innovation, Michael Lee Fine Cheeses were awarded the ‘Best New Idea’ at the Farm Shop and Deli show, 2014. “Our customers who are a mix of delis, retailers, wholesalers, marketers, restaurants, caterers, hotels, sports stadiums, top end chefs, etc., are using it on their cheeseboards, canapés, deli fridge and various recipes,” said Amy.
Photo: Sleaford Target
Although its makers and shop owners insist that charcoal cheese is very real and actually tastes great, not everyone is buying the idea. When Manor Farm posted pictures on their Facebook page, one user commented: “Get lost, April Fool’s was last week.”
Black foods seem to be getting really popular these days. Just a couple of weeks ago we posted an article on Indigo Rose, a variety of black tomatoes touted as the latest food craze.
via Sleaford Target