Friday, June 25, 2010

Little Difference #4


It seems there is only one type of cheese here "Tasty Cheese". Australians like their cheese old and sharp. Cheddar cheese here is white instead of orange/yellow* and my favourite type of cheese - marble - doesn't exist. Finding a mild cheddar cheese is pretty difficult and it seems like "harder" block mozza doesn't exist either (which is fine because I prefer softer mozza even though it's tough to grate).
It's weird to go to the store to look for cheddar and then get to the shelf and realise that all the cheese virtually looks the same - white/cream. I've spent many a grocery trips standing in the dairy aisle trying to find the cheese I'm after.

*this cheese isn't specifically labelled as "white cheddar" it's just understood that it's cheddar since other colours don't exist or aren't popular.

It's only in writing this post that I've learned that "Tasty Cheese" just isn't an Australian thing - it's an actual term to describe the age of the cheese (like mild, medium, strong, sharp, extra sharp, mature, old, or vintage, --- tasty falls between strong & sharp. At home I usually bought mild. I'd only get medium if that's the only thing the store had). It kind of cracks me up that the term is "tasty" and most packages have "tasty" in massive letters on the front. I always thought "you silly Australians, you don't have to tell me cheese is yummy!".

Any kind of pre-packaged thing (like side kicks type noodle dishes) that have cheese in it taste different because of the type of cheese that's used. Something I didn't really think about until I bought a package of noodles & cheese, made it and found that it tasted like stinky feet. Kraft dinner isn't popular here either. I bought a box once and again, it tasted weird. They have "EasyMac" but you cook it in the microwave, not on the stove.

I've also found that the "Christmas Cheese" phenomenon only exists at home. "Christmas cheese" is the cheese you buy around Christmas time for cheese platters. It ALWAYS seems to taste better (soft and mild).

I think it goes without saying that most varieties of processed cheese don't exist here or aren't popular. Most people put block cheese on their sandwiches rather than processed slices and I haven't seen cheese whiz or spray cheese anywhere (I bought a jar of "cheese spread" thinking it might be cheese whiz-y but it wasn't).

Temperature: +13C
Sunrise: 7:36am
Sunset: 5:09pm


toni in florida said...

Now we all know what to send you for your birthday and Christmas! (Wait... can you ship cheese like that??)

Megan said...

I don't think you can bring any dairy products (minus chocolate) in but I could be wrong... I'll get my fill of cheese when I'm home for a few weeks in August (truth be told I shouldn't even be eating cheese... oops).

Jo said...

Christmas cheese? I love it! Could you buy a bunch of Christmas cheese and freeze it when Christmas comes around? Do you need a care package of Kraft Dinner? I just begged my family on FB to send me some President's Choice White Cheddar M&C because we can't get that in the US! (And I want to know what Glen thought of the cheese selection in Canada!)

Megan said...

Jo - I think freezing it takes away it's yumminess haha
Oh man, pretty much the only things that I'm homesick for is food! I'm going home for three weeks in August so I probably don't need a care package yet BUT I likely will later this year. My family is HORRIBLE about sending me care packages - my mum actually flat out refuses hah :-/

I asked Glen about the Canadian cheese situation and he said he usually bought Old Cheddar (I think Cracker Barrel was cheapest in Inuvik) and he thought the fact that cheese was orange was weird. I think he missed tasty cheese.

Batty said...

Oooh, I think I'd like Tasty Cheese. I like my cheese strong and tangy.

Megan said...

It's not as strong as some cheese I've (unfortunately) had. It's edible but not something I'd choose willingly :-p