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Ingredient of the week: Beaufort

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03 APRIL 2009

Nutty like a gruyere, but cleaner and sharper, Beaufort comes from the Savoie region of the Alps, where the altitude of the pastures on which the cattle graze helps give it its distinct flavour. Similar to Gruyere and Emmental, but without the holes, it goes remarkably well with white wine – and fish. It’s a perfect cheese to grill or melt, and spectacular when grated over a quiche or tart. With an aroma commonly described as ‘grassy’, it comes in three varieties: Beaufort de Savoie, known as summer Beaufort; Beaufort d’alpage, a version made in local chalets; and Beaufort d'hiver or winter Beaufort. Try mixing some cubes into leftover mash to make cheese potato cakes and serve with rashers of crispy bacon