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Roquefort cheese is produced in the southwestern region of France and is designated as AOC, the first product ever to do so in 1925, and is a designation meant to denote quality and provenance from a certain region made in a certain manner. Cheese experts (and me) agree that Roquefort is one of the top, all-time-greatest cheeses in the world. And I was excited to explore using it in this delicious ice cream.

Roquefort is a raw-milk cheese, aged between 3 to 9 months in caves. It gets its unique flavor and mold as a result of some very old rye bread; jumbo-sized loaves are baked, then left to sit for two months, during which time they become encrusted with mold. The mold is scraped, then introduced into the caves, where the cheese becomes encrusted by the greenish powder, then inoculated with the spores (called penicillium roqueforti) by resting the wheels of cheese on spikes. That’s why often you see ‘lines’ of mold in Roquefort, as in many other bleu cheeses. But unlike other bleu cheeses, Roquefort has a very special, sweet and tangy flavor that lingers and excites.

Roquefort goes very well with winter foods, such as pears, dates, oranges, toasted nuts like walnuts and pecans, sweet Sauternes, or with bitter seasonal greens like frisée, radicchio, or escarole. A simple winter salad can be made with chunks of Roquefort, slices of ripe Comice pears, leaves of Belgian endive, and a drizzle of good walnut oil. But sometimes Roquefort’s best enjoyed just smeared on a piece of hearty levain bread…and that’s lunch.


When you buy Roquefort, it should be moist and creamy without any red mold and the cut surface should glisten with milky freshness. It usually comes with a piece of foil around its exterior, and whether or not to eat the rind underneath is entirely up to you (don’t eat the foil…especially if you have lots of dental fillings.) If the rind looks dark and funky, skip it. It’s probably going to be too pungent and dank-tasting. But most of the time it’s fine to eat and as delicious as the rest of the wedge.

In France, there’s a few brands of Roquefort to choose from. But I don’t think I’ve ever had a Roquefort that was not wonderful, so it’s hard to go wrong when buying from a reputable cheese vendor. You can also use a nice bleu or gorgonzola cheese in its place.

Here’s a recipe of mine that will surprise you: Roquefort and Honey Ice Cream.

Try roasting some pear slices in the oven with some strong-flavored honey and spices and maybe a strip of lemon peel. Serve warm, with a scoop of this ice cream melting alongside. I also like this with a spoonful of dark honey on top, with a sweet dessert wine, like Barzac or Sauternes, to accompany it.

Roquefort and Honey Ice Cream

Adapted from The Perfect Scoop (Ten Speed Press)
  • 6 tablespoons (120g) honey
  • 4 ounces (110g) Roquefort
  • 1 cup (250ml) heavy cream
  • 1 cup (250ml) whole milk
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • a few turns freshly-ground black pepper
  • In a small saucepan warm the honey, then set aside.
  • Crumble the Roquefort into a large bowl. Set a mesh strainer over the top.
  • In a medium saucepan, warm the milk.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm milk into the egg yolks, whisking constantly.
  • Scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.
  • Over medium heat, stir the mixture constantly with a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spoon.
  • Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the cheese. Stir until most of the cheese is melted (some small bits are fine, and rather nice in the finished ice cream.) Stir in the cream and the honey, and add a few turns of black pepper.
  • Chill custard thoroughly, then freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Related Posts and Recipes

Mint Chip Ice Cream

Making Ice Cream Without a Machine

The Easiest Chocolate Ice Cream Recipe…Ever

Buying an Ice Cream Maker

Honey, Made in Paris

Salted Caramel Ice Cream Recipe

The Perfect Scoop: Now in Softcover!

Ice Cream Making FAQs

Recipes for Using Leftover Egg Whites

Roquefort Société

Roquefort (Wikipedia)



    • Alisa

    I knew about the caves, but not the rest. I love this cheese too, but…don’t you want to know who figured out HOW to make it…eh have you tried letting the bread mold, then rubbing it on cheese in a cave…were they high? Thank you for the info. Love info.

    • David

    Alisa: I think because cheese was originally a way to preserve milk, perhaps some shepard was carrying his moldy loaf of bread with some milk. It was all sloshing around as he climbed every mountain, and voila!, Roquefort. Or something like it…

    • Melissa

    Oh my god, roquefort and honey ice cream? Can I marry you? (Actually, I think you’ve just saved my marriage, as now I know the one kind of ice cream I can make that won’t mysteriously disappear from the freezer while I’m at work. Sometimes it pays to be the only roquefort lover in the family!)

    • Monica

    The cheese may excite, but the green lump of bread found on top of my fridge last week does not. And yet they’re so interrelated in the grand scheme…

    • Nina

    Coincidentally, I just bought an ice cream maker and am making your Mint Sherbet from Room for Dessert for its first use tonight… but now I kind of wish I had some Roquefort!

    • Lisa

    This sounds lovely – I’ll have to try it soon.

    (Edited by David…merci Lisa!)

    • FJK

    I love this cheese. Had a yummy (at least to me) dark chocolate praline truffle with roquefort cheese center at the recent fancy food show — which means I was able to combine two great loves. Would be great with a nice big Italian red. That would make three loves!

    • Jenny

    Wow this looks amazing! I guess I could use Stilton too for the ice cream, or do you think Roquefort would be better?

    • Fatemeh

    Poor C gets sick EVERY time he eats any kind of bleu cheese.

    I’ll echo Melissa’s sentiments — this could be an ice cream I don’t have to fight for!

    • Randi

    on a totally different note, I was thumbing thru Richard Sax’s classic home desserts and I came across your recipe for east-west gingerbread. I can’t wait to make it. Do you have it anywhere in your blog?

    • shauna

    David, this is SO not fair. I love roquefort, just adore it, but I can’t have it. Damn that moldy old rye bread — that’s gluten, baby. Ugh. That little bit will make me sick.

    Fatemah, is that why C gets sick when he eats it? How’s he with wheat?

    Still, these photographs are great. They just make me want to eat it!

    • Ivonne

    A thing of beauty!

    • Molly

    David, this recipe of yours is what ice cream makers were made for, clearly! I can’t wait to try it. Thank you!

    • Alisa

    Now that song from The Sound Of Music is going through my head…you know, with the climbing of mountains, forging of streams, and that lonely goat herd, that movie was subliminally ALL about the cheese. THAT was the dream!

    • Fatemeh

    Woah, Shauna… that’s CRAZY that just the freakin’ spores off the bread carry enough gluten to make you ill. Unbelievable.

    No, there must be something in the inocculations of mold that upsets his gut. It’s not just roquefort — it’s all bleus. And he really loves them, too. He can have maybe a 1/2 inch piece without getting sick, but that’s about it.

    • McAuliflower

    I wonder what a scoop of this would be like on top of a walnut ladden brownie?

    • keiko

    David, I can’t wait to try it – it sounds very intriguing!

    • Tania

    What a great explanation of the origins of this delicious cheese. My jaw dropped when I saw the ice cream recipe; it sounds incredible, and yes, I can imagine how heavenly it would be served alongside baked fruit!

    • Cin

    wow, thanks for the recipe – I’ll have to get an icecream maker soon I think!

    Can you believe that they have only just started allowing the import of Roquefort into Australia?

    • Judith in Umbria

    David, I cannot eat ice cream more than once a year, but you inspired me to work with Roquefort and I have invented a new recipe just for you. It requires two more tests and a tasting by an Italian, but then I shall post it at my blog and name it for you! I use a lot of Gorgonzola, but Roquefort is 20 euro a kilo here, so much less of it.

    • Ben W

    Well, I made it. And I’m still not sure what to think of it. :) Pictures up on my blog (see link).

    • Lyn-nut

    I like to make scones with this cheese and a dash of tabasco. — Hey David, it’s me Lyn-nut, noisette – from C.P. days. How do I contact you?

    • lieludalis

    I am stunned and stupified…and can’t wait to make this.
    PS: I too agree that Roquefort is on the top of greatest cheeses list.

    • rebecca

    This looks phenomenal! DYK: Roquefort is made delicious by butyric acid…which is also found in sweat and vomit.

    P.S. The legend of roquefort goes like this: There was a young shepherd who forgot his lunch (bread and cheese) in one of the Combalou caves (where Roquefort is made today). Supposedly, this young man left his lunch behind after seeing a beautiful girl [how French!]. He returned one year later [with the girl, I hope] to find his cheese covered in mold. He was so hungry that he ate it anyways… and discovered that it was even better with all the mold than before.

    • Alex

    David, you are officially my hero.

    • katie parent

    My husband made this yesterday and it was interesting and very delicious.

    • MrS

    David, does it require to be the quite strong Roquefort, or would the resulting ice cream benefit even more from a comparable mild “Österkron” found here in Austria?

    I love blue mold cheese (or any kind of mold cheese), but for some reason I never came along well with genuine Roquefort and its strong (kind of disgusting) taste. With our experiments of self made pizza we came to the conclusion, that the very mild and tasteful “Österkron” just is it, and I am very tempted to try this recipe with “Österkron” instead.

    • dan

    I did this recipe, but with mild gorgonzola instead of roquefort. I also added some nuts and almonds. It came out OK, a little weird; people who get excited by reading the recipe should know that it comes out salty. I think salty deserts just don’t work for me; I don’t think I’ll make it again. Salted caramel is something else, that works, this doesn’t (for me, again). My wife absolutely hated it, she had a bite and that was it… it goes well together with chocolate ice cream though.

    • Lauren Cox

    Hi David,

    Left a comment a while back about ice cream (wasn’t very nice about Grom but…well.. all food mile, sustainability talk aside, at least it’s not the most expensive ice cream/gelato in the world, did you catch the NY Times article last week??). Anywho… just wanted to pass this address on to you for the next time you’re in Italy. In Salsomaggiore center (Salso is about 20 min. outside of Parma) there’s a genius ice cream maker named Sanelli. He’s kinda socially awkward but I wouldn’t know what else to expect from someone whose family for 3 generations have been hell bent on creating day in and day out strange, local, and sometimes tastebud stuptifying gelato.
    Yesterday I drove that 20 minutes and happily paid 17euro for a kilo with flavours: Kefir, Oak Tree Honey, Gorgonzola DOP, Ginger, and something like half granita/half gelato of Blueberries. I would bring you some if you wouldn’t think I were psycho. Instead.. you should really come here and try for yourself.

    Also… what is the best HOME ice cream maker to spend your hard earned money on? Is there a difference between Gelato maker and Ice cream maker per say?

    Take care,
    Lauren Cox

    • David

    Check out the post at the end of the recipe Buying an Ice Cream maker for tips and suggestions.

    Am unclear as to what the difference between a home gelato-maker and ice cream machine are so can’t advise. What’s the difference?

    • Rachel

    What a wonderful recipe! I have made similar using gorgonzola, but I’ve not tried using honey within the ice…I cannot wait to try this at the weekend, I have a glut of pears just aching to be slathered in hot honey & Roquefort ice cream. thank you!


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