It’s not rude to say “stinky cheese” you know. There is even a cheese called Stinking Bishop .
As far as I’m concerned, the bishop can keep it and all the other pungent, malodorous spawns of this cheese genre.
I have tried to appreciate various stinkers, really I have. Just the other week I was presented with a particularly well regarded washed rind cheese ( washed rind – I usually run very fast when I see that descriptor…) However,on the evening in question I was determined to show everyone what a sophisticated palate I had, a kind-of look at me scarfing down a piece of cheese that actually smells and tastes like a goat’s rude ‘n’ dirty bits.
Oh my goodness, I put a slab of flobby, smelly stinker in my mouth and time stood still. I needed to get it out and pronto. Linen napkin? nope, can’t spit there, not ladylike. Tissue in bag? Nope, nothing, new bag, no scraps of spitting paper, not even an old Coles receipt. Floor? Can’t do it. Table? Is it really going to come to that?
It could have. I had to move fast whatever I was going to do. I couldn’t breathe, everytime I tried to take a breath, the air rushed over my taste buds and olfactory nerves and released more of the stinky stench. Suffocate or choke? That’s what it came down to. I had to commit to swallowing the mingin morsel whole using red wine and like I said, I had tossed a heftly slab in there and it may well get stuck on the way down.
Oh my goodness, it was an ordeal and just what I deserved for being a show-off. It did go down and I ate a big blob of quince paste to make sure any burps were sweet.
I sat very still and humble for a while. Was it all Emperor’s New Clothes? Was everyone else actually gagging on their washed rind too but were just better than me at disguising their horror?
I sat there and considered my folly. “sweetrosie” I said to myself, “you really are such a big show-off. Now, you WILL ‘fess up and blog this. Just hope all your new gastronome pals aren’t tittering behind their hands as they delete you from their blogroll.”
There’s a endnote to this little tale. I catered for a group of 50, white collar educators today. My cheese boards were a sight to behold! Tumbles of crispy crudite, bunches of luscious muscatels on the stem, strawberries, corella pears. crunchy crackers.
And the cheeses? Beautiful, runny double brie, “everyone-likes-it” wax rind edam, crumbly vintage cheddar AND the most delectable King Island Roaring 40’s Blue, the one in the black wax? I adore this cheese, such a treat. I like it in salad, I like it with pears and I like it with a gobbet or two of fruit paste.
Anyway, back to my guests. All the brie, gone. All the edam, gone. All the blue, still there…not touched, not so much as an atom of cheese missing. I went very still again. Another moment of cheesy befuddlement for me. I give up.