Sunday, March 13, 2016

Cheese quest

When I was helping to bring up kids many moons ago, computer games like Kings Quest, Space Quest, Police Quest etc were all the rage.  My present quest is obviously much less important than that but it has some importance to me.

Going back further: When I was a kid in the '40s and '50s there was no variation in what cheese we ate.  It was always Kraft cheddar cheese in the blue packet and with the silver foil inside.  That it didn't need refrigeration even in the tropics was probably part of its appeal.  And I don't think our household was much different from any other at the time.  I think Australia had something of a cheese monoculture at that time.

As time went by however, the available types of cheese proliferated -- and Kraft cheddar faded from view.  But the variety did not conquer all.  What happened was that a new monoculture arose: "Tasty" cheese arose to rule the roost.

And like a good Australian, I too for many years mainlined on Tasty.  Recently, however, I have looked outside my rut a bit and have tried some other cheeses.  And as part of looking more widely, I wondered if you could still get the old Kraft cheddar.  Rather to my surprise I found that I could.  My local Woolworths has it in a small corner down the bottom of one of its shelves.

So I wondered how it matched up against more modern cheeses.  I bought a packet. And it was still quite pleasant but a bit bland.  It goes very well as grilled cheese on toast however.  So Kraft cheddar was the beginning but not the end of my quest.

Other cheeses I have tried include Club Cheddar from the Mary Valley (Queensland) -- with pickled onion in it -- and Cracker Barrel black label.  The Onion cheese has the best taste in my view but both are a bit too crumbly for me.

So my quest continues. Is there a cheese with a strong cheesy flavour that is not crumbly?