On Cheese: A Story of Love and Hate

As a child, I was first introduced to French cheese by the man behind the counter in our local grocery store. He offered my mom and me a slice of Brie on a cracker. It wasn’t the best of acquaintances. I wasn’t a big fan of (Dutch) cheese to begin with, and this was just more smelly and more gooey.
Some years later in life, I got a proper introduction by the woman who is still my cheese guru. She could happily have dinner eating nothing but bread, some salad, and loads of cheese. Foul, smelly, stinking cheese — that more and more often began to taste not so bad, actually. I never saw her eat Brie. (Last time we met her she served us goat’s Brie but I don’t think that counts. After tasting it I realized that I’m still far from being a fearless cheese eater.)
The best tip she gave us recently, was to buy Coulommiers cheese. She did say to buy it at the market in the village nearby where she lives (in France); but during our last visit to France, we weren’t there on market day, so we skipped and bought some in the supermarché to take home. Bringing cheese home from France is another mixed pleasure. Every time I open the fridge, a horrible stench gusts out, best resembling the smell of fresh manure. For some reason, cheese bought here in Holland never smells that bad. Maybe that’s why it doesn’t taste as good, either.
The Coulommiers tastes like Brie with a fierce kick (it’s actually from the Brie region, so technically it is a Brie). I like it best straight from the fridge, that’s soft enough for me — but my cheese guru will disapprove. According to her, cheese should be taken out of the fridge at least an hour before eating it. I guess I still have issues with gooey things…

A picture of the Coulommiers still left in our fridge. You can almost smell it. Note the ‘au lait cru’ sign on the package; unless you’re pregnant, don’t buy cheese without it, or it will (usually) taste as bad as it smells.

2006-01-06. One response.


  1. Hello!

    I guess that good looking cheese cake won’t be around for long.

    cool blot blog, though