Yeast, Yum!

The people who lived in my London flat before I did were a very friendly Australian couple. We met when they showed me around my first week in the city, and have since then kept up a casual correspondence. When they moved out, they very kindly left me all their pots and pans, an electronic bathroom scale...

...and two unopened jars of Australian Vegemite.

Me: "...Thank you?"

Still, after leaving the jars unopened on my kitchen shelf for over four months, curiosity finally got the better of me. 'What exactly does salty yeast extract left over from beer brewing taste like when spread on a cracker?', I wondered. I've never tried Vegemite before, never tried the similar British Marmite, nor even the similar Swiss Cenovis (which comes in a tube, because we love tubes in Switzerland. Mayonnaise, anyone?)

I got out some crackers (whose packaging advised me to "simply add cheese or [my] favorite topping," and after all, who was I to say that Vegemite might not be the one?!)

I spread. I slathered. I scraped. I smoothed. turns out, that's not how you're supposed to do it. My crackers should have been replaced by toasted, fluffy white bread, which I then should have slathered in butter, and then ever-so-lightly dusted with just the merest hint of Vegemite. (I learned this, by the way, from a Hugh Jackman interview, watched after-the-fact.)

I'm incredibly glad to learn of my mistake, because WOW, was that ever one disgusting cracker the way I made it. It smelled fishy, tasted acidic, and left an aftertaste of, ironically, beer (and I hate beer). I half-heartedly took a second bite, hoping it might grow on me, and instead merely proving the accuracy behind the classic 'Fool me Once' idiom.

Maybe one day I'll try it Hugh Jackman's way.


I do after all have that second jar.