It’s a commonly accepted myth that the ploughman’s lunch, a platter of cheese, bread, pickles and cold cuts, was the traditional lunchtime fare of hardworking men in the fields. Yet many now attribute the dish to a post-war dairy marketing board, a faux-rustic combination dreamed up to encourage people to eat more cheese. Try it at Double Decker, where the ploughman’s platter comes with English cheddar cheese, gherkins, pickled onions, roast tomato, pickle and crusty bread, as well as chicken, turkey or other meats. Dhs80. Double Decker, Al Murooj Rotana, Sheikh Zayed Road (04 321 1111).
Also try… English cheese
According to the British Cheese Board, there are more than 700 different cheese products within Britain. A few of these varieties include Cheshire (one of the oldest varieties, and referred to in the Domesday Book); Shropshire blue (which, confusingly, is made in Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire), stilton and its unpasteurised cousin, stichelton; Cornish yarg; double Gloucester; red Leicester and Wensleydale. Here’s our pick of must-try varieties of English cheese.Cornish blue
This blue cheese is a global award winner – it was named World Cheese Champion in 2010. Originating from Cornwall at the south-westerly tip of England, it’s handmade from pasteurised cow’s milk, hand salted and allowed to mature for 12 to 14 weeks. The flavour is mellow and sweet. Dhs22 per 100g. Jones the Grocer, Sheikh Zayed Road (04 346 6886).Long Clawson blue stilton
Located in Leicestershire, the Long Clawson dairy has specialised in making stilton since 1911. The cheese comes in both blue and white varieties: blue stilton is characterised by a creamy consistency with a tangy, sharp flavour.Dhs59.25 for 175g. Milk and Honey, Meadows Town Centre 1, Emirates Hills (04 435 6363).
Lye Cross Farm cheddar
This Bristol-based dairy, in the county of Somerset, is located six miles from the town of Cheddar, from which cheddar cheese originates. The dairy specialises in making a variety of cheddar cheeses, and the range is available in Dubai at Choitrams – don’t miss the organic and vintage-matured varieties. The organic range is due to be stocked by Ripe this month. From Dhs15.95 for 200g. Choitrams, various locations, www.choithram.com.