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On the cheese board: Maytag blue

Published March 23, 2005

Maytag blue cheese

Rich and tangy Maytag blue cheese from Iowa can be used many ways. It's excellent in dressing or crumbled over a salad. The pungent blue wakes up a plain baked potato, and some people are never happier than when a puddle melts into grilled steak.

We love its earthy, spicy essence smooshed on a water cracker.

Iowa State University developed the process for making America's most famous blue cheese in 1941, and Fred Maytag, of dishwasher fame, took over the production and gave it his name. Maytag gets its blue vein from penicillium roqueforti, but is smoother than French Roquefort because it's made from the milk of cows, rather than sheep.

Blue cheeses are always popular with ports, but what else?

Cabernet sauvignon is bold enough to stand up to Maytag's brawn, says Arthur J. Bullard, owner of Grand Cru Wine Cellar (11724 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa; (813) 269-8463). For white wine drinkers, dry, aromatic sauvignon blanc generally suits blue cheeses well, he says.

Look for Maytag blue in the silver wrapper with blue lettering at grocery stores that stock fine cheeses and at specialty food stores.

[Last modified March 23, 2005, 17:04:10]

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