Monday, 24 November 2008

On curds, but not so much whey

I'm fond of experimentation. I'm becoming more bold about it, now that I've moved out, but I was always kind of into trying new things. Ever since I hit the age of 20, really.
Now I think of "university experimentation" and I'll be honest, I think of ambiguity in gender preference and drugs. TV seems to have conditioned me that way. However, I've never felt the need to make out with guys and I've never inhaled anything more ambitious than a lungfull of exhaust fumes or a cup of tea, if I was too vigourously quaffing.
And you have to sometimes. If it's a good cuppa.

But nothing entertaining, no. Up until now. For my previous experimentation has formed itself into a noble and wonderful quest. A misguided, potentially dangerous but thoroughly wonderful quest.
I'm going to eat my way through the entire Monty Python cheese shop sketch.

See, I had 2 highlights to my week during my work placement year. I would have had 3, but I didn't think I had time for visiting HUGS (turns out that really, I probably would have with better organisation). I had Friday's bacon and cartoons night and I had shopping night. Shopping night involved going to the supermarket, picking up a few bits and pieces and a trip to the cheese counter.
The cheese counter at your local Morrison's is a magical place. A place where every race, colour and creed can proudly present its dairy goods without fear of discrimination, where every nation proudly represents itself. Except Scotland, because they are stupid and never provided a regional cheese. I mean I've nothing against Scotland, but they need to represent themselves a bit more in the world of cheeses.
Every week, I'd get a new cheese just to see what it was like. Some days brought great and unexpected joy, like the pickled onion cheddar cheese and other days, like the unforgettable mint chocolate chip cheese day, left me with a lingering sense of horror and utter confusion. I mean seriously, what the crap? But no matter what, there was always new cheese day and every week, some new and interesting experience was had until I realised that I perhaps wasn't in the mood for that much cheese and inevitably just threw it on some pasta and tried some noodle experiments instead.
I've noticed something about Tesco cheeses, though. For one thing, for the really exotic stuff you have to brave the Cheese Man. He's a nice enough bloke, for sure, but he's very slightly unusual in a way I can't quite pinpoint. Never seems to look directly at you. He is the first peril of Neo-cheese night. The second comes in the pronounciation, because trying to say Gruyere with the kind of accent I've got makes you sound like a pretentious git. The third comes in ignoring how I just paid £2.50 for a block of cheese...
But I take these home and eat them and they are good. Splendid. But then I look back at some of the names...

Roquefort (this week's offering)

And so a plan is forming...
I reckon I can eat my way through the entire sketch, you see. Not the bouzouki, but the rest of it for sure. Perhaps along the way I will catalogue any interesting experiences, but for now I'm laying down my plans.
I hope to emerge from this a little more cultured, a little wiser, but overall thoroughly satisfied.

And Hanna, if you're reading this (and I'm sort of sure you are), I just realised as I was buying the Roquefort that it is indeed sheep cheese. Goddamn it. I should have known you'd win in the end, even the supermarket is being converted to your way of thinking...


Anonymous said...

I Love the chedder with shallots!
It is amazing!

Andrew said...

Ooh, pickled onion cheddar, an' all.

Really, I'd imagine that any cheese with onion would be good.