A Danish cheese for an Irish recipe? Rather intriguing, no? Or are you more confused about why it’s called ‘Irish Rarebit’ when you’ve probably only ever heard of Welsh Rarebit?
PARTNER POST – I received compensation to create this recipe; all opinions are my own.
So let me explain: I adore cheese. Some more than others, and Havarti is definitely one of my favorites, so when I was asked to create a recipe for Castello Havarti, I didn’t have to think twice.
“Since 1893, Castello® has brought a range of innovation and tradition to the art of cheese making. Castello® cheeses cover a wide range of traditional regional recipes and our own unique crafted cheeses, always made with natural ingredients and great attention to detail.” -Castello
Hmmm, traditional regional recipes–made with natural ingredients and great attention to detail? Sounds like someone I know. This is what I love in a company; when I feel that their history, mission statement or goals are completely in line with my own, and that quality is priority.
Now to explain about Irish Rarebit vs. Welsh Rarebit. First of all, just to make sure you know that ‘rarebit’ is pronounced just like ‘rabbit’, although there is no rabbit involved, thank goodness, because we used to have two lovely bunnies as pets: Hazel and Primrose! Aren’t they adorable?
Rarebit is essentially a glorified ‘cheese on toast’ recipe. Most people have probably heard of Welsh Rarebit, but I am one of those who had never heard of Irish Rarebit until I was perusing my Mrs. Beeton’s cookbook and was very intrigued when I saw it. My recipe below is adapted from good old Mrs. Beeton’s recipe (she was an authority in cooking and household management in the UK during the 1800s).
Irish Rarebit, unlike Welsh Rarebit has no beer, strangely enough, and includes a bit of a surprise ingredient with chopped gherkins. Many Welsh Rarebit recipes include an egg yolk or two, but I have never used eggs in my rarebit. And isn’t this a great idea for St. Patrick’s Day next week?
The Irish Rarebit was fabulous; accentuated by the flavors in the cheese, there really wasn’t any reason to add anything else. I hope you enjoy my recipe and are inspired to create your own using Herbs and Spice or another Castello Havarti flavor!
adapted from a Mrs. Beeton recipe
1 oz butter (1/4 stick)
3 tbsp milk
8 oz Castello Herbs & Spice Havarti cheese, grated
1 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp prepared English mustard (or substitute your favorite mustard, or omit)
freshly grated black pepper, to taste
2 tbsp chopped gherkin or cornichons
4 pieces of thick crusty bread, toasted (I used my own No Knead Bread)
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat, then add the milk and grated cheese, stirring until the cheese melts and becomes smooth. Add the vinegar, mustard, black pepper and gherkins; stir to combine and remove from heat.
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- 1 oz butter (1/4 stick)
- 3 tbsp milk
- 8 oz Castello Herbs & Spice Havarti cheese, grated
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- 1 tsp prepared English mustard (or substitute your favorite mustard, or omit)
- freshly grated black pepper, to taste
- 2 tbsp chopped gherkin or cornichons
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat, then add the milk and grated cheese, stirring until the cheese melts and becomes smooth. Add the vinegar, mustard, black pepper and gherkins; stir to combine and remove from heat.
- Allow to cool slightly, stirring occasionally. Preheat the broiler (grill) then place the four pieces of toast on a baking sheet and divide the cheese mixture evenly between them.
- Place under the broiler, until bubbly and hot; place on plates and serve with gherkins/cornichons and salad, if desired.