Thursday, 12 April 2012

Leerdammer - smooth and holey

Take yourself back to when you were a wee willy winky (young child). The world is new, magical and wondrous. Your experiences of life are made richer and more interesting every single day as you discover fresh new smells (like cut grass and petrol stations), weird consistencies (like jelly and blancmange) and some of those magical, inexplicable things that the infantile mind is intrigued by (belly-button fluff).

Your inquisitive and information-hungry young mind seeks input from any place it can. The most accessible sources of information tend to be drawn from (1) story-time before bed, (2) tales from friends on the school playground (which have usually been exaggerated beyond measure through Chinese-whisper), and, of course, my personal favourite (3) cartoons.

I may have become acquainted with Leerdammer cheese later on in life, but somehow I can still feel nostalgic about it. It reminds me one of the first impressions I had of cheese picked up from cartoons like Tom & Jerry. All the cartoons do it - yellow pungent cheeses full of holes, whose wavy scents usually lure mesmerised mice into mouse-traps. The only difference is that Leerdammer is not a strong cheese. It is semi-soft and quite mild, and although doesn't have the deep flavours of some of the blues,  I love it. Especially on crackers. And also, much as I have a soft spot for the Dutch football team who for so long have brimmed over with skills but underachieved in major tournaments (like England!), I find myself warmed to this one. Cos let's face it, the French and the English are the heavyweights in world cheese - it's good to see some other nations stepping up to contend. I'll give it a 6 out of ten. This doesn't mean that I don't rate it of course, but I have high expectations!

The other early association I made with cheese was the moon. I haven't yet found one that's like the moon though. There's still time...