Sunday, 14 November 2010

Teller of Untruths, Your Trousers Have Combusted

It's 12:36 PM on a leafy suburb of any given generic city. All to be heard are the fleeting cars on the duel carriage way nearby. Then a bell echoes around. Starting in the marble corridors and making its way to the cochlea of a child. It is now time for the sacred ritual that is kids lunchtime. The yard is full. Groups of boys and girls scream, running around with not a care in the world. But then one boy tries to exaggerate a tale of his to gain some playground respect. But hes pushed it too far. The dreaded chant bellows out creating a silence and all eyes gaze upon him....

"LIAR, LIAR, PANTS ON FIRE!"



But what does this mean? Why are his pants on fire? Is it literal or maybe just a good rhyme? Well legend has it, it originates from the fact that lying is considered an immoral act that is punishable by spanking. Henceforth one who lies bottom will be hit causing his or her pants to be on fire.



And well we all know who are the biggest liars and contradictors of the lot? Not the poor school child trying to navigate the social maze of primary school, but the GOVERNMENT!!!

They need to get their stories straight....

Here is an article from the NY Times about the government scaremongering about fat and then pushing cheese sales.

Now neither of these are necessarily bad things. But they need to put their message across differently. People shouldn't just be worrying about their fat intake, but looking at their all round health. Be active, eat healthily, have some sense, instead of frightening people about fat they should be encouraging educating ourselves so we can make informed decisions not just be told eat less of this and more of the other.

Cheese does have quite a high fat content, but its has its advantages being calcium rich. But were not expected to eat 100g at a time. Its not going to kill you unless you have one of these a day....



Then it would be goodbye friend...


Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Dead or Alive

Zombies. The walking DEAD. The living DEAD. The unDEAD. But are they really dead??

Well the idea of a zombie originates from Haiti and a young man by the name of Wade Davis was fascinated by the tales of voodoo. He had read stories of zombies and their link with voodoo, which told of the people being controlled as laborers by a powerful sorcerers or bokors. In the 80s he presented a pharmacological case that could explain zombie like states. So the bokor would introduce 2 chemicals to the victim. Straight to the blood, usually via a wound. Assumably this is where the grotesque name of the modern pop culture zombie comes from. First he we add a toxin "coup de poudre" the main component being tetrodotoxin which is found in the flesh of puffer fish, fugu, which when not prepared correctly can be deadly as popularised by a certain Mr. Homer J. Simpson, well he wasn't a friend to the salad....




Together which another drug these powders were said to induce a death-like state in which the victim's will would be entirely subjected to that of the bokor. Then they would be reanimated after being buried. Thus breaking up through the soil comes the iconic zombie. But is it immortal now or is it just a corpse?

This point can be transferred to other debates. The one we'll choose is the philosophical hot pot that is cheese of course. So what is cheese. It is one of life's great conundrum. Is the cheese the immortal embodiment of milk? Or is it a corpse vessel that is the Tumuli of the milk? The opposing sides of the argument go as such....


The late great American author Clifton Fadiman argued...

"A cheese may disappoint.
It may be dull, it may be naive, it may be oversophisticated.
Yet it remains, cheese, milk’s leap toward immortality"

Where as a certain James Joyce disagreed with him...

"A corpse is meat gone bad. Well and what’s cheese? Corpse of milk."

NO, NO, NO, NO......... Yes..........












Saturday, 16 October 2010

Homeopathy Apathy?

You wake up. Look out the window. Grey. You go to the bathroom and see a pale version of your former self staring back at you. You haven't been abusing your body with the usual concoction of cheap booze and expensive second hand smoking. But you still have this throbbing in the deep of your throat. So what do you do, straight and grab the Covonia?


FOOL!!! Look at how the cheap advertising has lured you into this rash self harming decision. What is wrong with the good old homoeopathic remedies of days gone by? Sure people used to live to the tender age of 56 back then. If its good enough for them its good enough for me!




Homoeopathy has been kicking around since 1796 when a German by the name Samuel Hahnemann put foreward the idea to treat ill patients with a diluted sustance that would give the ill effects to a healthy patient. Hmmmm maybe a home remedy might be better for that sore throat then....

So the pain of the sore throat has you paralyised. You cant bare to venture out in the grey surely there must be something in the house you can use to you own advantage. So you pull open the fridge and its there staring straight at you in all its cheeesy glory. Cottage cheese!



Yes for many a year people have been using this to clear a sore throat. So here how it goes down. You make a cottage cheese poultice. You do this by getting some cottage cheese spreading it on a cloth and heating it with a hair dyer. Then wrap this cloth around your throat. Leave for 3-4hrs and hey presto sore throat is gone. Or is it??? Id prefer a we gurle in the bathroom...


Saturday, 9 October 2010

Cracking Up

Last night I ventured into the depths of the past for a gig in Sheffield. It was in a venue called skate central. I thought, oh a nice we throw back to times of yore, bubblegum, slush puppies and hotdawgs, old LED scoreboard, the blood of a grazed knee on the floor, but essentially now converted into a music venue.



But when I arrived and entered up the marble stairs a pair of skates were thrust apont me. Several nerve calming drinks later and I can say I could imagine myself to be as smooth as these boys....



Even to glide like this guy would have been acceptable....



But no doubt this is who I was aspiring to be....






Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Mother Goose

"Old Mother Goose,
When she wanted to wander,
Would ride through the air
On a very fine gander.
Jack's mother came in,
And caught the goose soon,
And mounting its back,
Flew up to the moon"



Ma, mum, mother dearest, mama, mummy, mom. Whatever the name the beast remains the same. The bond from mother to son is one of the strongest history has seen. It is a theme explored from as far back as ancient Greek mythology. However due to a certain Mr Freud naming a complex, relating to a child's unconscious desire for his mother and resentment or jealously of his father, after Oedipus, people believe that Oedipus felt this bond also. When in fact Oedipus' parents, Jocasta and Laius, never intended to encounter their son. After hearing from the Oracle that their first born male would kill his father and marry the mother they did what any parents would do. They bound him by the ankles and asked a servant to dispose of him.

Of course the servant couldn't carry this through and off loaded him to a shepherd in a near by town. Life is good for Oedipus until a drunk tells him that his "da" ain't his da. So he goes to his local Oracle who doesn't tell him who his real father is but informs him of the prophecy.

Afraid of fulfilling the prophecy he runs away to the nearest town, which just happens to be his birth place Thebes. On his journey he comes to a point where 3 roads meet and encounters a Chariot driven by, unbeknown to him, his birth father, King Laius. So in a fit of road rage Oedipus slays his dad over who has right of the road. Don't tell me you wouldn't have done the same.

Continuing on towards Thebes he came in contact with Sphinx, who would stop all those who traveled to Thebes and ask them a riddle.


"What walks on four feet in the morning, two in the afternoon and three at night?"

Oedipus answered correctly. Can you? The Sphinx is astounded and inexplicably kills itself, freeing Thebes. In turn this earns him the recently widowed Jocasta's hand in marriage, completing the prophecy. The rest is your usually Monday night soap affair. Mythical kings eh?



There is an old Spanish proverb that reads:

"An ounce of mother is worth a pound of clergy"

If this be true then this New Yorker is worth a few Monasteries. Daniel Angerer has posted up a recipe for breast milk cheese. Unsettlingly called Mommy's milk cheese. It was interesting to see that the same rules and procedure still apply. Interesting to note that it would have different tastes depending on the diet of his wife at the time. This is surely a new market. With the limited types of feed you can give to a goat/cow/sheep it can be hard to find new unique tastes, but with the female they have a multitude of options to alter the taste of the milk. and inturn the taste of the cheese. Do women ever cease to amaze?


Monday, 27 September 2010

Day Zero

In the beginning was the Fermentation

Today I embarked on a new path. From the humble surroundings of Belfasts finest family run delicatessens to a new world filled with fermentation. I enrolled today at the School of Artisan Food...





"I have changed my name so often,
I've lost my wife and children"

The school is nestled away in the corner of the Welbeck Estate. Home to thousands of acres of farm, forest and fields peppered with imposing stone buildings. Also on the estate is the impressive Welbeck Abbey. A Monastery that dates back to 1143. And how things have changed in a mere 900 years. The premonstratensian order that originated in Germany were believers in strict self denial. How they could manage that with the smell of baking bread to compliment the Stichelton made just down the road. They were known as the white monks.




And here is a sneak peak of further things to come. Rough ladies and gentle men I give you. Stichelton...







Thursday, 8 April 2010

Day onehundredandthirtynine.....

And On The 39th Day He Rose Again


Like a phoenix from the flames, Thomswoon has risen from cutting floor of the fromagerie. And how the world has changed in those 39days. But why wait 39days. Does that make me 13times less of a being as Jesus? Or maybe more, or perhaps I was on a trip?

http://news.discovery.com/space/mars-rocket-vasimr-nasa.html

Cheese will not stop for any man. Cuisine is forever changing. Throughout the ages, different cultures have banqueted in many different ways.


But now thanks to a wise aunt of mine I have seen the future of dining...

Cheese Restaurants

All the menu sounding pongingly delicious however I did stumble across one anomaly. L'Assiette de l'Etable. It is described in the article as.

"An assortment of three cheeses on toast, served with lettuce and cooked sliced ham."

Aye, cheese and ham toastie? But fear not many a dish even for the concerned vegetarian.

"I am not a vegetarian because I love animals; I am a vegetarian because I hate plants"


The words of comedian Whitney Brown. I wonder if that's why some people are carnivores?




Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Day nintynine....

This Is The End

This is the last post, for the time being that I shall make. The end is nigh. It was written that on the 100th day the world would stop, cheese would cease to be, turning to dust. Every animals milk would dry up and the rivers of dairy will end. So I will make the final pilgrimage to Dalston, to worship our leader. The one whom we strove to improve ourselves with for the past 100days. Together we will all stand when the sands of time run out.



"Don't leave me, it is necessary to forget everything you need to forget,
which is already over.Forget the times of the misunderstandings, the lost time,
to know how to forget the hours, which sometimes kill,the reasons why, the heart full of joy.

Don't leave me
Don't leave me
Don't leave me
Don't leave me

I offer you pearls of rain, coming fro countries where is never rains,
I will cross the world until after my death,
for to cover your body with gold and bright light,
I will give you a kingdom where love will be the king,
Where love will be the law
and where you will be queen.
Don't leave me
Don't leave me
Don't leave me
Don't leave me
Don't leave me."

Thomswoon could no longer take it anymore. A knife through his heart of cheese. Mouth stuffed with Baby Belle. He could no longer bare the sight from his window. He would rather have died looking at cheese than live and see merely cheese once every now and again. And his final message scrolled across his chest in squeeze cheese, the end.........

Monday, 8 March 2010

Day nintyeight....

What's In A Name

"For a moment she rediscovered the purpose of her life.
She was here on earth to grasp the meaning of its wild enchantment,
and to call each thing by its right name.
By its right name."

This is a quote from Dr Zhivago and is later recalled in a film called Into The Wild. A beautiful film it is. Based on a true story about Chrispoher McCandless, he shuns society, gives all his college money to Oxfam, leaves his comfortable middle class life, and after 2 years hitching around USA ends up as far away from society as possible living in an unused bus in the Alaskan wilderness. But it isn't until he is reading this passage that he realises that his happiness is not in the beauty of the world but the relationship with the people he met as he explored it. But it is too late he knows that he will die and writes through this passage...

"Happiness is only real when it is shared."

And how true this is. For the past 98 days it has been onemanandhischeese, Thomswoon. Am I doomed to be trapped in this blog.


"Happiness is only real when it is shared."

Tis only too true and I am only too lucky to have had many friends around to help contribute ideas when my mind was lacking. My better half Raymona Crozier, a Mexican with one of the finest minds Mr Tony Moore, the only other person who appreciates the female form more than myself Jemima Cartin and nighthawk, ChatRoulette harlequin Rosemary Kirton. I thank you all. But that's enough of all this "cheesiness" time for the hard hitting headlines...

"Teen Pleads Guilty To Hiring Hit Man To Steal Block Of Cheese"

What fine cheese must this be? Caciocavallo Podolico perhaps? A cheese made in Italy and costs the same per lb as silver. Well no its not that. Maybe is Mouse House cheese in Bjursholm? Costing $500 per lb? No in fact it was Queso Fresco.


Jessica Sandy Booth mistook this cheese for a block of cocaine. The homemaking of Queso Fresco is quite common with Hispanics as it is seen as safer, due to TB outbreaks linked with the raw milk. So she mistook at this home cheese making as a cocaine production line. She then compounded this mistake by hiring an undercover police man to steal the cheese and kill the four men in the house. The worst case of mistaken identity since this unfortunate incident.






Saturday, 6 March 2010

Day nintysix....

What Next?


"My interest is in the future because I am going to spend the rest of my life there."

This quote is from inventor Charles F Kettering. He was head of research for general motors and would have bestowed this knowledge around the early 1900s. It must have been a very exciting time and look at the change 100 years has made.


This is an image of Belfast's Vitoria Square taken around 1910. And here it is 100 years on.


But today nostalgia seems to have over taken our desire to look to the future. Which is surprising as the future has never been so exciting with nanotechnology the world is our oyster, even being able to replicate conditions of how the world was created. But many arts, fashion and media look back to the "good old days" but not these boys...



These are the good old days but what was I talking about....



But where does cheese belong in the future? There are again two major camps on this. The artisan cheese makers, who want to bring cheese back to the singular farms and use traditional methods. And then there are these people...

http://www.dairy-journal.org/index.php?option=article&access=doi&doi=10.1051/dst/2008038

This is an article about a study into using cryogenics in the cooling of the cheese curd. Cryogenic cheese?

So do we embrace the traditional, tried and trusted methods? They must be the best as they have lasted for many a moon?



But don't be afraid of the future. For tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today.



Friday, 5 March 2010

Day nintyfive....

Ice Cream Man, Ring Your Bell


"Clickin' by your house about two forty-five
With a sidewalk sundae strawberry surprise,
I got a cherry popsicle right on time
A big stick, mamma, that'll blow your mind"

When most people think of ice cream I'm sure they conjure up such picturesque images of a summers walk through a park, as the sun begins to lower in the sky, it's cooling after a baking day and the ice cream can be enjoyed without dripping down over the grasping hand. Sweet flavours. Strawberry, bubblegum, mint choc chip, rum n raisin. But what's this... Fromaggio Gelato? Cheese Ice Cream? Yes don't let your eyes deceive you. And after thinking about it I suppose it makes sense. Cheese is made from milk and cream. Heres is a recipe...

http://italianfood.about.com/od/gelatoandsherbet/r/blr0546.htm

When first invented in 500Ad in China, they would serve ice cream with saffron and vermicelli. Again sounding strange but the Asian use of vermicelli is not like the dried pasta variety you would find in the shop, it is more akin to a rice pudding.



What would King Tang of Shang think? He was the first king of the Shang dinasty, and it was he who commanded 94 to make a frozen dish using buffalo milk and flour. Think of his face as you suckle upon that icy treat, and thank him for his foresight.

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Day nintyfour....

From Cheddar With Love

It has been a long and arduous week. The past 90 days had caught up with me. My brian numbed (yes I meant brian, tis a joke referencing my tiredom), and I was cheesed out. I stared at the black screen ahead of me. Nothing could live up to the reasonably low standards I had been churning out, that's how low it went. With the finish line in sight I seemed to give up. A bit like the story of the tortoise and the man.

http://www.stewartlee.co.uk/youtube/fistoffun1-1.htm
(Watch it all as it is one of the best TV shows ever made, but for this reference skip to 18:58)

But then in my mailbox today I did receive, a message, a sign, a gift. Go forth and complete the 100days, stop being so lazy, I know "15 storeys high" by Sean Lock is a great show but really 2 series in a few days, think of the cheese. This was the gift....


A program from the comedian Richard Herring's latest show "Hilter Moustache", in which he is trying to reclaim the swastika(refer to day33 for onemanandhischeese's efforts) and also the comedians toothbrush moustache. It was signed "Michael, you cheesy c***. I like Cheddar." And I realised I have only flited with the worlds most popular cheese. Mr Herring himself is from Cheddar, Somerset. And for you who have never visited here is a brief synopsis of the way of the world in Cheddar.

http://www.stewartlee.co.uk/youtube/fistoffun1-2.htm
(01:48)

Cheddar cheeses first record of being used in UK was in one of King Henry ii banquets were he purchased 10, 000 lbs. But the favourite cheese of the English isn't exactly, well English. The recipe is from a French cheese Cantal. But after a few minor adjustments it is now the worlds most popular cheese. This is mainly through the fact that Cheddar doesn't have a PDO, a protected designation of origin, so any thing hard and yellow is usually called Cheddar. Whereas traditionalyl it was only cheese made within 30 miles of Well Cathedral that could claim this. I can imagine the people of Somerset singing this next tune, shouting out about the world stealing the traditional methods of making Cheddar and exploiting their heritage.




Sunday, 28 February 2010

Day ninty....

Fromage De Santa

"Go often to the house of thy friend; for weeds soon choke up the unused path."
This is an ancient Scandinavian proverb. Its roots lie with the original makers of Lapland Cheese.

The packaging is very modern for such a traditional cheese. Lapland Cheese is one of the oldest cheeses in Finland. It is mainly produced in the summer due to the high milk production. The fresh farm milk was warmed up in the big kettle, few drops of rennet added and after the coagulation the cheese mass was stirred and loosely pressed. The pressed cheese was baked next to an open fire until the surface of this ‘’bread’’ was brown spotted. The baking board was very special, a wooden disc with base. Traditional surface treatment of the Lapland Cheese by open fire improved the quality and killed the bacteria which cause taste defects.


This above picture is not the first thought of mine when I hear Lapland. Many a night wandering through the back streets in soho I often walked past a neon sign reading Lapland. It must have been the UK distribution centre for the cheese. Staff all seemed very friendly trying to entice me in. They must have been followers and knew Thomswoons face.

Saturday, 27 February 2010

Day eightynine....

In The Dark

Fed up of running out of your favourite fromage delight in the small hours of the morning and you need that sweet nutty hit to get rid of the sweats so you can get hours of peace and nightmares? Just me then? But why not make your own homemade cheese cave.


Not exactly like this. Back in days of yore caves were perfect for maturing cheese in due to the consistent humidity. But now you can replicate this. All you need is an old refrigerator, a temperature regulator and bowl of water.

http://www.cheesemaking.com/includes/modules/jWallace/OnLineNews/NewsFiles/Cave/Cave1.html

But that is the history. What does the future hold in store for caves. Here is a piece of work by Mexican artist Alan Ruiz titled "Cave".


I think the shapes on the floor represent cheese. Hmmmm. Ponder this with another famous Cave lilting in the background.


Friday, 26 February 2010

Day eightyeight.....

Two Fat Ladies

Well as its day 88, I conjured up the image of 2 fat ladies, 88. Today obesity is rife. Kids are dying, doors being widened, cranes to take people to hospital. It is getting out of hand. Many people are blaming high fat foods, snacks etc. And of course with cheese being a high fat food they are scaremongering people into not eating it. But it is not the blame of the foods or the food industry, subliminal advertising, showing food everywhere as delicious as ever. But look at the fat. A good size helping of cheese, say 40g, which is ample for a huge sandwich contains 14g of fat and consider that the GDA for women is 70g and men 95g how can this lead to obesity. Don't blame the food.



Leave it alone. Blame it on the subject of this next song...


Thursday, 25 February 2010

Day eightyseven...

I'm Tired And I Want To Go To Bed



There is a new breed. The wine ponce. We are the age of the binge drinkers. Not only the students and adolescents, but our older peers too. Alcohol is cheaper and easier to acquire and in the case of the sweet alcopop drink too. But its not all consumption, one of the newest and fasted growing hobbies is wine tasting. People are now signing up to sample wines and pick up the complex flavours and notes they taste. And there are experts who will tell you what food goes best with the wine etc etc etc. Call me a sceptic but phaa! And now these experts are telling us what wine matches cheese. We are fools to take their advice. Many cheese boards will contain up to 6 different cheeses. So that would mean 6 different wines. Maybe they are on to something... But I will not be bought. Enjoy cheese with whatever tipple you enjoy. Neither go hand in hand. Listen to the cheese. PONCE.


These two fun loving critters are cheese and milk. They are dairy products done bad. They are heavy drinkers and love a bit of violence. They are here to rid us from these ORGANISED HIPSTERS.


"Disfigurment may be trendy, but assault is eternal"

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Day eightysix.....

Oh That's The Stilton!

A Dictionary of Modern Slang, by John Camden Hotten. Not to be mixed up with Grose's "The Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue", which I have mentioned a few times on previous days. Hotten used Vulgar tongue as a reference point and it is quite the treat. Hotten was quite the bibliophile. He wrote and published many books. He wasn't the most pleasant of men and was quite often surrounded in scandal. He also owned a bookshop. Reminiscent of anyone?



But between his blackmailing and fornicating, Hotton was quite the compiler of slang. And it was in publication that many of the great cheese saying come from. "That's the cheese", "That's the Stilton", but one significant one was "cheese" referring to something being good. In today's modern world something being "cheesy" is a slight on it. But in 1863 it was seen as...

"Anything good, first rate in quality, genuine, pleasant or advantageous"

But it was the Americans who first coined the phrase the "Big cheese". It came in a piece in a New York major in 1922.

"Foley, say there, Foley, with your hair of reddish hue
And your Irish smile, begorra!
Blarneyed them into meeting you.
The big mayor of Olean fair,
You're the big cheese on the scene.
Foley, tell us, Foley, is your city song
The Wearin of the Green?"

And soon it would become something everyone despised. Here's to you, you BIG CHEESE.



Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Day eightyfive.....

Guardians Of The Cheese

In a land a long time ago the accent rulers gaurded the secret to eternal youth, beauty and spritiual fulfillment. The world was a diffent place to what we know now.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/tuchodi/3182434953/

But can you freeze cheese? There are many thoughts on this topic. Many cheese freeze better than others. The harder the cheese the better. For example if you find a fresh piece of Reggiano buy several large portions cut from the main block. Then you can freeze it, and grate or shred it straight from frozen onto your soup, pasta toast and it will melt on contact. Beautiful.

As time passed and the land thawed out the legend of the precious cheese began to spread around the land. Prospectors came from far and wide to proclaim the cheese as their own. But the new fortress was to strong and the elders wiser than ever.



But it wont be too long before the cheese is acquired by an evil force. Time to call in the police.



Monday, 22 February 2010

Day eightyfour.....

Alone We Stand, Alone We Fall

"Loneliness adds beauty to life. It puts a special burn on sunsets and makes night air smell better"

The words of Black Flag lead, Henry Rollins. And words that this one man with only cheese as his counterpart can understand well. This is not saying I shun away from society. Only a lonely man could truly enjoy a beer, some cheese and black flag in a luxuriously warm bath in an unluxoriously cold house. I stumbled upon this poem by Dan Anderson whilst drying from bathing.

"The Lonely Cheese
I'm a lonely piece of Gouda
the last one on the plate
I arrived with many others but
the others you have ate

I'm a lonely piece of Gouda and
I'm begging to you please
eat me up, don't let me waste
I'm a tasty chunk'a'cheese

Yes I'm a semi-soft Gouda
and not some spreadable slacker
and I hope you eat me soon Sir,
before you finish the final cracker"

It made me realise how selfish I have become. In the 84 days it has been about me. What cheese I found, what cheese I ate, what cheese I manipulated to fit this very loose narrative. I forgot about the one I loved, what was going through the mind of the cheese.



Ohhh the tragedy.

"And she cannot tolerate my lactose."

A tear fell, followed by several more. Had this been written in days of yore a inky puddle would have appeared, a word smudged to show my emotion, but alas the tears fall onto the keyboard. Only the customer service desk at PC world will share my pain, and exasperate it by charging me to fix the salted keys. We are all truly here on our own...





Sunday, 21 February 2010

Day eightythree...

Rennet

What is makes cheese vegetarian?


"Well is kinda doesn't have the rennet in it. Depends whether there has been, um, if there has been an animal process in it. Animal fats or something in there, and if you get a vegetarian cheese it doesn't have any of that in it at all. So the rennet, sometimes they wrap it in these sort of cheeses from European type cheeses they can wrap it in a bit of rennet to intensify the flavour"

Well don't believe everything you see on TV. This was Ainsley Harriott's attempt to describe rennet. What's wrong with just saying, I'm not certain...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006v85g

Fast forward to 4:00 for a beautiful explanation.

This may seem a bit smug. But I don't mean to be. I'm not making light of his lack of knowledge but I don't see why he has to lie. It isn't vitally important but he is so brash about it he must be outed. Mmmmm I love that rennet wrapped cheese.


That is an exaggeration. Rennet is actually just a group of enzymes that are naturally produced in a cows (or any other mammalians) stomach. It is used to separate (coagulate) cheese into curds and whey. This is why it isn't vegetarian. It is extracted from young calves that are being breed for their veal.

Sorry if this has put you off your cheese and pickle sandwich grinding in your mouth. However most widely produced cheese these days is produced using a genetically engineered rennet. Produced by the fungus of the aspergillus niger.


But why did we delve straight to the stomach of the cow?

"As when fig-juice is added to white milk and rapidly coagulates the liquid,
and the milk curdles as it is stirred, so speedy was his healing of raging Ares."

This passage is from Homers epic Greek poem The Iliad. Of course this was written in the 8th or 9th century so why not make cheese this way. Then instead of the above nauseating stomachs above, we would have a similar but not as gruesome object hanging...





Day eightytwo....

Norn Iron

Northern Ireland. Homeland of 1.7million people. A football team lying 40th in the FIFA World Rankings. History of failed ship making. Maker of cheese. It makes sense. Although this has not always been the case. Most of the fine cattle in Northern Ireland is used for beef. We love it. But now a few of the big creameries are producing cheese and lots of it.



Some people could argue that this should fall into cheesart, but unless the sculptures are purposely abstract that shan't be the case. Maybe I am being short sighted and like surrealist Rene Magritte's 1923 Self-Portrait, the above sculptures follow his example.


But God loves a trier....



Friday, 19 February 2010

Day eightyone...

Since My Baby Left Me

I have talked a lot on this blog about the new art movement of the 21st century. Cheesart. Many of the current cheeartists may not be appreciated in their time but they do this not for the money. They do it not for the glory. They do it for their love of cheese. And now its time for another future cheesart classic. Rather than the classic sculptures it has now developed to the collage.



This piece has been made using cheese puffs. This is a snack invented by the US of A in the 1930s. They are puffed corn snacks that have a cheese mixture inside and coated in a cheese powder on the inside. Beautiful stuff. Who thought such primitive tools could produce such a beautiful body of work. "O great creator of being grant us one more hour to perform our art and perfect our lives"

These the words of another great artist. In day 54 his words are used in a cheese advert so his affiliation is strong. I wonder what he would think of cheesart if the great man was still with us...


Thursday, 18 February 2010

Day eighty....

Those Tired Eyes Behind That Grinning Smile



"She'll come, she'll go. She'll lay belief on you"

A fictional smile. I feel this song is about love. Loving a woman when you know she'll just use you. And what's wrong with that. The smile of the Cheshire Cat. The Cheshire Cat's smile is the smile of a trickster. The mentioning of the Cheshire Cat is popular culture dates back to a book I mentioned in day 17, "The Dictionary of The Vulgar Tongue".

"CHESHIRE CAT. He grins like a Cheshire cat;
said of any one who shows his teeth and gums in laughing."

This was a slang term used by many people of the region. Many believe it is derived from the cat-like gargoyles on the 12th and 13th century buildings around the Cheshire villages. But the Cheshire Cat was immortalised in Alice and Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.



Carroll was influenced heavily by tales of Cheshire cheese being mad in cat shaped molds. You would begin eating the cheese at the tale and the last bit to be eaten was the smile of the cat.

"Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in all my life!"

Cheshire cheese is the oldest named English cheese and can even be found in the doomsday book of 1086.



It is a salty crumbly cheese, which makes sense as Cheshire is long linked with salt production. 6,500 tonnes of it is sold around the UK today making it the choosy cheese choosers choice.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Day seventynine....

Say Cheese

If for any reason this blog gets bought by a big TV executive and made into a 1980s sitcom my only request is that this is used as the opening sequence.



However not only is this a delightful snippet of years gone by, it raises a good question. Why do we say cheese before getting our souls stolen, I mean our pictures taken. Well nobody knows exactly where its came about from, but it is thought when smiling for portraits became fashionable in the 20th century, the studios and photographers needed assistance to help their subjects smile. Also with the improvement of dental health and Kodak developing a cheap camera that many families could use everyone was dying for that perfect smile.


When you elongate the word cheese out the corners of you mouth raise, your cheeks lift and you sneak out a bit of denture, the perfect smile. But why not disease, or trees or fleas? Nobody knows. But again it is changing, in some London studios instead of saying "cheese" the subjects are asked to say "prunes" to give them a tight lipped pout, making them look like they have got some attitude.

So now as you know its not vital to say cheese why not the next time some one is taking for photo be more adventurous with your smile word. If your getting you photo taken in jail maybe try "escapees". Or maybe asthmatics could go "wheeze", like they usually do. Or maybe if you are being sent back to your own country lighten the mood of your photo by yelling "deportees". Weather men could holla "light breeze". Perhaps you are a pirate and just enjoying your latest raid why not but on that bling and pose for a photo and proclaim "freedom of the seas". Any more?

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Day seventyeight....

Happy Pancake Day

"Well its 'Happy Pancake Day'
All Across the western world,
See me and my girl,
Kissing in the kitchen,
Kissing in the kitchen,
Kissing by the stove,
Push me up against the fridge girl,
I can't stand to eat alone.
So now I'm hungry, now I'm thirsty,
Now I'm craving just a little more.
Pile my plate up to the ceiling,
Kissing in the kitchen.
I can't stand to eat alone,
I can't stand to eat alone,
I can't stand to eat alone,
I can't stand to eat alone."

Yes it's pancake tuesday. And the above words are from the genius of David Tattersall from one of the greatest and underrated bands about, The Wave Pictures.



But whilst we are all going on about eating pancakes people forget that it is the dawn of lent. This is a period of roughly 40 days in which Christians prepare for Holy Week. Mostly people now just link it to giving up something for 40 days and nights. I was considing giving up cheese but after reading this I feel it is too dangerous to go cold turkey.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/article4538527.ece

"Food triggers “pleasure” chemicals

Scientists have identified that pleasurable sensations stimulated by food share common pathways in our brains to those triggered by drugs. For example, there are similarities in the way we release the “pleasure” chemical dopamine at the thought of a food we love to the way an addict's brain reacts when he or she thinks of his or her drug of choice."

Drug of choice, surely that contradicts with the fact its the "addict's" brain, as they are addicted they have no choice? Here are some choices....

"Drugs are for mugs, Whilst dont forget to refuse the booze, Stay in school."




Monday, 15 February 2010

Day seventyseven....

CheeseRoulette

"Voyeur Sex Games Spread On Chat Site"

This was the headline ran by the Observer about a new website that has taken the Internet by storm. The website in question goes by the name Chatroulette. In case you are unawares, Chatroulette is a website which randomly links you with other strangers from around the world via a webcam chat. It is completely random and by the press of a button you can cut to another stranger. But whilst the newspapers will always concentrate on the negative, this is an amazing website. You can be linked to a hotel in downtown Tokyo or a farm in Peru, although you do have to view more willies than you thought you would ever see in your lifetime let alone 10minutes. That aside it can lead to great discoveries. I was talking to 2 Turkish fellas and low and behold they were eating cheese and they gave me a run down of the best Turkish cheese.


They're favourite cheese was Eski Ka┼čar. The Turks learned about the making of this cheese when they settled in Anatolia. It is a sheep milk cheese. Eski translates roughly into old and the reason it is called old is that the cheese is aged in an icehouse for 6months. If it is made with 100% sheeps milk it will keep for up to 3 years.

They then asked for my view on Turkish cheese. I went on to explain how that the shop I work in sells 100s of cheeses from many different locations. USA, Norway, Greece, Cyprus among the most obscure but not Turkey. But I passed on what knowledge of Turkey cheese that I had.



It wasn't long before i was F9ed and a picture of a not to impressive member was on my screen yet again. They say life is about the small moments....

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Day seventysix....

Love Is In The Air

St. Valentines day is upon us. A time to celebrate with your lover or commiserate with your friends. But where has this tradition of romance spurned from. Why are we compelled to buy flowers, chocolates to appease our partners. People believe it came with Chaucer's poem "A Parlament of Foules" in which he wrote.

"For this was on seynt Volantynys day,
Whan euery bryd comyth there to chese his make"
"For this was Saint Valentine's Day,
When every bird cometh there to choose his mate"

So from that point on we were doomed. The consumerist had won. But on the plus side, many beautiful romantic poems were created. My favourite is "Say Cheese" by Patrick Winstanley.

"Gorgonzola, Cambozola, Happy snappers, Sandwich wrappers.
Parmesan, Vacherin, Week old socks, Smelly cocks.
All these, Say cheese"

Beautiful, it brings tears to ones eyes. Cheese has often been linked to romance and in this advertisement for Amul cheese slices, it shows that courage and cheese slices can lead to great romantic feats.



So for all you lonely hearts out there grab a cheese slice and take that gamble....








Saturday, 13 February 2010

Day seventyfive....

Saturday Night

It's the weekend. Time to get on the dancing shoes. Get that fresh from the wash, crisp Ben Sherman shirt on your back. A couple of splashes of Old Navy and you are set. Off for a dance into the hippest cosmopolitan bar you can find.



But yes as this animation shows, there are hidden pit falls. This story represents the modern youths of today Saturday night out. Everyone goes out with starry eyed optimism. Maybe they'll meet the one they love, maybe they just have a good time. They dance the night away and then overcome the dangers and finally they are about to take that girl home then....



So stay in and listen to other peoples japes instead...


Friday, 12 February 2010

Day seventyfour...

What You Looking At?

In every aspect of modern life their is fear. The media breeds it. Everything gives you cancer, the world is getting hotter, and cheese is getting tougher. Turophobia is rife. That is the fear of cheese. I am more a turophilliac. Even so in 2007 the government set up the Cheese Enforcement Agency, the CEA if you will. This website breaks the cheese down into different classes and helps us identify what cheeses we can or cannot own, eat or trade.

http://www.jasperfforde.com/specops/cheeselegality.html

Some of the legal jargon on this site can be quite tough to understand so here is a hand chart you can stick up on your wall.


For some reason the tough cheeses are depicted by a lumberjack, but is the lumberjack really the vision of the tough man?



But please take note do not be afraid. How to deal with fear? Laugh at it. Today's post has been in the vein of Orange Juice song "Poor Old Soul part2". Thank you and goodnight.

"His tongue tucked firmly in his cheek"