Properties of blue cheese 

If you love cheese, discover some interesting facts about blue cheese, a cheese with as many supporters as it has critics. 

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Blue cheese: that delicacy for so many palates and yet so hated, on the other hand, by others. Easily recognisable thanks to its characteristic colour (with flecks or speckles in a blue or greyish colour), blue cheese is a cheese (whether sheep's, cow’s or goat's) which is produced as a result of the fermentation of the milk with a type of mould called penicillium. This mixture releases a series of bacteria that gives blue cheese a strong aroma, in addition to a slightly spicy and salty taste. Its smooth texture makes it an ideal food for spreading, melting, chopping in salads, or adding to sauces to accompany meat, among other options. 

The production of blue cheese is completely safe and harmless, since the micro-organisms that take part in the process do not negatively affect human beings. Indeed, the fact that blue cheese forms part of our lives nowadays is the result of a coincidence. Legend has it that a countryman once forgot about a portion of cottage cheese he had left in a cave and, when he returned, he discovered it looked completely different. He tried it and was equally amazed at his discovery. Other myths point towards it being a Roquefort cheesemaker (France) who played the leading role in this event.

Talking about blue cheese isn’t just talking about its aroma and flavour. The properties of blue cheese are diverse and extremely interesting in terms of our health. Firstly, blue cheese is a source of calcium, which helps to maintain and keep our bones and teeth in normal conditions. Other benefits of blue cheese are its high mineral content, such as zinc, which helps to protect cells from oxidative damage, and its high protein content, something which helps to maintain the muscle mass and to keep bones in good condition.

What types of blue cheese are there? One thing for sure is that we can find a vast variety, although there are four that stand out above the rest and have won their place in the Olympus of the Gods of cheese. They are Cabrales (Spain), Roquefort (France), Gorgonzola (Italy) and Stilton (England). The first two, in addition, are some of the most consumed, partly thanks to the advantages they offer.

Furthermore, Cabrales cheese and its properties, stand out. This type of blue cheese comes from the Asturian municipal area of Cabrales  and has a greenish colour. It is a source of proteins, which help to increase and preserve muscle mass, and it has a high calcium content.

Possible drawbacks of blue cheese

Blue cheese has benefits and drawbacks, like most products. Blue cheese has a high fat content, which can be harmful to our health if we eat too much. However, don't be too disheartened: blue cheese can easily form part of our diet, we just need to control how much we eat.