The average annual cheese consumption of Dutch people is 14.3 kg per person. This consumption is more than 6.5 times that of the Japanese.
Wow, Dutch people eat more than 1 kg of cheese per month!
Cheese fondues, cheese cakes, cheese in snacks, cheese in sandwiches, cheese on spaghett, oven dishes, salads, and crepes…etc,
Cheese is very important position for meal next to potatoes in the Netherlands.
Cheese Trivia Part 1
Even cheeses of the same brand have different flavors depending on how long it has been aged.
Jonge: Young cheese
Aged for 2 months
Soft, creamy and little smell.
Belegen: Aged cheese
Aged 8 months
It’s still soft, but you can feel a little salty.
Oude: Old cheese
Aging 2-3 years
When sliced, it crumbles easily.
It is a strong salty taste and a distinct smell.
8 Popular Dutch Cheeses
There are various types of cheese produced in the Netherlands, which is one of the world’s top cheese export.
The cheese such as Gouda, Edam and Alkmaar are named after the region where the cheese was produced. In addition, the taste of cheese differs depending on the region where it is produced.
Gouda cheese is the most popular cheese in the Netherlands, and has a creamy and neutral flavor.
Gouda cheese, which accounts for 60% of cheese production in the Netherlands, is named after the town of Gouda near Rotterdam.
Great for slicing into sandwiches or as an ingredient in cheese fondues and cakes.
Edam is moist and soft, and has a slightly lighter taste than Gouda cheese, and moderate saltiness and fragrant flavor. It is often used as grated cheese.
It is named after the town of Edam, which had a cheese market from the 16th to the 20th century.
Maasdam is a Swiss-made cheese that is more softer than Swiss Emmental cheese.
It is characterized by the fact that air hole are formed inside the cheese due to its fast maturing speed, and it looks like a cheese in anime. It is often used pizza, or cheese fondue.
Old Alkmaar is the cheese of Alkmaar, the city of cheese after Gouda and Edam.
There are three types of maturation period: 10 months, 15 months, and 36 months. The longer the maturation period, the more aromatic and salty tastes.
Old Amsterdam is a cheese with a long aging period, which is made by aging Gouda cheese for a long period of 18 months.
It features a moderate amount of salt, a smooth texture, and a rich flavor and mellow richness.
Beemster is the cheese of Purveyor to the Dutch Royal Household.
The town of Beemster, known as the oldest Dutch polder at 4m below sea level, is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
The milk from cows grazing in the Beemster contains plenty of minerals from the sea and is highly valued.
The tast is sweet and rich and very well with beer.
Leiden is a healthy low-fat cheese made from buttermilk or skimmed milk.
Cumin seeds are kneaded in to supplement the richness, so it has a refreshing taste with spices.
Geiten Kaas is a goat cheese.
There are two types of goat’ cheese, a soft and fresh type, and a semi-hard one similar to Gouda cheese. Geiten Kaas has a strong smell, so this cheese is separated from likes and dislikes.
Cheese Trivia Part 2
Kaas is cheese in Dutch.
Kaas often appears on cafe menus, so it’s useful to remember.
Kaas, which is used in sandwiches in Dutch bakeries and cafes, is usually Gouda cheese. When using other cheeses, the cheese name is written on the menus.
Buy cheese in the Netherlands
When you want to get at a lower price, the supermarket is cheap. But supermarkets don’t have tasting samples.
So the first, let’s visit the cheese souvenir shop. There you can sample various kinds of cheese. Of course you can also buy it.
Rare cheeses can be found in cheese shops in town. They will also vacuum pack it for souvenirs.
My favorites are Beemster and Old Amsterdam. Try to find your favorite cheese by eating many kinds.