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Topic: Vegemite - Australia's National Food
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 6, 2006 06:27PM)
Just curious as to how much you guys know about Australia. Have any of you ever tasted our yummy breakfast spread Vegemite?
Message: Posted by: APC (Mar 6, 2006 06:38PM)
Ive been offered it by some australian friends...i had to decline...just couldn't make myself eat it!
Message: Posted by: Corona Smith (Mar 6, 2006 06:42PM)
Hi Tim,

I have tried vegemite but didn'y really care for it, this may be a cultural difficulty as I live in the land of marmite, which I like.

I think marmite was invented by accident after a toxic spillage at ici (but I could be wrong) any ideas who invented vegemite.

the band 'men at work' immortalised vegemite in the uk consciousness.

all the best, Corona
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 6, 2006 07:08PM)
BASKITBOY5 - You don't know what you're missing! ;)

CORONA - I've tried Marmite, but I think it's like VHS and BETA... PEPSI and COKE... PENN and TELLER... you either like one or the other.

Here's a little bit of Vegemite history for you: In 1922, Fred Walker (1884-1935) of Melbourne, Australia decided to try to make a special "yeast extract" that would be as delicious as it was nourishing for his Fred Walker Cheese Company to sell. The chief scientist in the company Fred owned was Dr. Cyril P. Callister, and it was Dr. Callister who invented the first Vegemite spread. He used brewer's yeast and blended the yeast extract with ingredients like celery, onion, salt, and a few secret ingredients to make this paste. In 1912, a national competition and a prize of 50 pounds was offered to the winner or winners to name the new product.. The name ‘Vegemite’ was finally chosen from the entries by Fred’s daughter Sheilah .
Message: Posted by: Brad Burt (Mar 6, 2006 08:51PM)
I love the stuff! They sell it in the local 'health' food store here abouts. I first got some when a friend in Australia sent me a jar. He claimed it was the secret to drinking more than one should..... Best,
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 6, 2006 10:25PM)
Sue-Anne has just assured me that she's heard the same thing... apparently it lines the stomach quite effectively...
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 6, 2006 10:30PM)
And look, it's a good hangover cure for the morning after too:

Hangover Cures: Vegemite On Toast - Something in your stomach is good, and salty is even better. Plus you get a Vitamin B top up. The same reasons also make peanut butter a good choice, but the oily nature might make some sensitive stomachs feel a bit yucky. If you do try try this one, skip the butter and just have dry toast.
Message: Posted by: Michael J. Douglas (Mar 6, 2006 11:14PM)
It's weird that it's a hangover cure considering (I've read) that it a beer by-product.
I haven't tried Vegemite, Marmite, or Promite. I don't know if we have it around here in WV. I have, however, try Vitameatavegimin and it's fantastic! :goof:
Message: Posted by: Sue-Anne Webster (Mar 7, 2006 12:59AM)
Try Vegemite. It'll put hairs on your chest!

Vitameatavegimin? I remember Lucy (from the "I Love Lucy" show) doing a GREAT sketch on that stuff! How funny was that?!
Message: Posted by: Chrystal (Mar 7, 2006 02:50AM)
Hi Sue-Anne,

They've been showing Lucy on the retro channel recently..and that particular sketch was recently shown. funny! funny! funny! Her facial expresions were priceless!

I often joke with Simon Lovell about his habit of eating Marmite..which I refer to as black goo and he refers to it as food of the gods. Vegitmite is way better! Not eating it again however, as you mentioned it puts hair on the chest. Shudders! Truthfully I've only tried it once...and that was enough. Give me escargots anyday!

Chrystal :O)
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 7, 2006 02:54AM)
More fascinating Vegemite facts:

Vegemite is found in 9 out of 10 Australian pantries!

22.7 million jars of Vegemite are manufactured in Australia every year - that's 235 jars per minute.


Using your favorite bread, some butter or margarine, and of course, Vegemite.

Spread butter on a piece of toast or bread.
Cover very thinly with Vegemite (for the optimum Vegemite sandwich you only need a dab). Dip your knife in the Vegemite, and scrape up just a bit (it will mix right in with the butter and spread easily). Some people like to "marble" the Vegemite into the butter.
Eat it open-faced and enjoy!
Message: Posted by: Dean A (Mar 7, 2006 06:00AM)
Ancient lore dictates that you are either a 'vegimite' OR a 'Marmite' person. I laugh in the face of this absurdity and say pishaw and zounds to't

I love both. They both taste like a little bit of breakfast heaven.

NOTHING that good was the result of am ICI spillage belirvr me.....in either country, and I have enjoyed both in both.

Message: Posted by: Dean A (Mar 7, 2006 06:01AM)
Message: Posted by: Dean A (Mar 7, 2006 06:04AM)
This stuff can also save your life on days when your wife is at work and you are home alone with the kids. Vegimite, cheese, some bread and a home made cubbyhouse can go along way.
Message: Posted by: Sue-Anne Webster (Mar 7, 2006 06:33AM)
Vege's my favourite. I hate promite or marmite...

Tim's right with how you eat it. If you use bread - the NICEST (and unhealthiest) way to eat it is with still warm, thick, fresh white bread with a nice crispy crust. Not bread with sugar in it - real bread.

If toasted - then a really nice grain bread - YUMMO - gotta go have some!
(freshly squeezed orange juice or black tea is perfect with it)
Message: Posted by: Dean A (Mar 7, 2006 06:54AM)
I chop and change a bit. It keeps the different delicious flavours interesting. But I say go crazy. Full sugar white fairy bread, with vegimite and cheese at a teddy bear's tea party in the cubbyhouse.
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 7, 2006 07:33AM)
I can just hear the voices raised in song from the cubbyhouse:

"We're happy little Vegemites as bright as bright can be,
We all enjoy our Vegemite for breakfast, lunch and tea,
Our mummy says we're growing stronger every single week,
Because we love our Vegemite,
We all adore our Vegemite,
It puts a rose in every cheek!"
Message: Posted by: revlovejoy (Mar 7, 2006 10:28AM)
Well now I know more about vegemite.

Magis6, it makes perfect sense to me that a "beer byproduct" would be a hangover cure. We homebrewers know that homebrew almost NEVER yields a hangover. There's a natural carbonation process that continues in the bottle when you make your own beer. That means a bit of sediment in your beer, and lots of yeast cell "husks" which are very rich in vitamin B. You won't get that from a commercially made beer that has been carbonated with forced CO2 gas.

Relax. Don't worry. Have a homebrew.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Kelly (Mar 7, 2006 10:42AM)
According to my Aussie friend Jane "Vegemite is fair dinkum" and she promises to bring me home some next time she goes back there.
Message: Posted by: spadesy (Mar 7, 2006 04:04PM)
(Kraft) Vegemite is best on a toasted crumpet.
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 7, 2006 04:17PM)
Mmmmmmm... I'm hungry... time for breakfast!
Message: Posted by: Zamboni (Mar 7, 2006 04:34PM)
Being a fellow Australian I have to point out that Vegimite is a by-product and ultimately poor substitute for it's originator, the Japanese product, miso. (Which by the way tastes fantastic on toast with tahini for breakfast).
Message: Posted by: RandyStewart (Mar 7, 2006 06:34PM)
I eat the Vegemite daily but hadn't tried it until an Australian friend recommended it. Up until then I was on Marmite. My Whole Foods store carried it at $7.00 for a 2oz. bottle. Yeah not much at all! But I cherished every bit of it and oh that wonderful heavenly smell from an open jar of marmite.

He brought me a sample of Vegemite and lo and behold! The heavens opened and angels sang about glory and discovery.

A great Australian icon that I enjoy everyday.
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 7, 2006 06:48PM)
Message: Posted by: Simon Lovell (Mar 9, 2006 09:36AM)
Yikes, I'm in the minority but I'll stand proud behind my tub of Marmite ... as Chrystal said earlier ... I believe it to be the food of the gods (which should stop me eating it as I'm not a God, but you know what I mean!)

Tim and Sue, good to see you here doing a great job even if you are Vegimite heathens!

Message: Posted by: rikbrooks (Mar 9, 2006 10:23AM)
OK, I'm convinced. With my recent health problems I have become Vegan and as such am looking for anything to expand the flavors at my disposal.

I just ordered a jar of Venemite from eBay.
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 9, 2006 04:38PM)
Simon, great to see you in here too! If you have any tips as a former Guest of Honor yourself, we'd really appreciate it!

Rik, follow the instructions for eating it VERY CAREFULLY. Use lots of butter or marg and spread it THINLY!

I think we'd better take some Vegemite sample packs with us over to FISM this year.
Message: Posted by: Simon Lovell (Mar 9, 2006 07:22PM)

When I was guest guy here I realized early on that it's a LOT more work than I first suspected. I decided to set aside two hours each day to carefully go through that days replies/questions/comments and post my comments etc. If you leave it too long you get totally swamped by it!

But, you and Sue seem to be keeping on top of it really well!

Hope to run into you again some time soon!

Message: Posted by: Elly May Drudge (Mar 9, 2006 07:28PM)
Hello Simon, I like your glasses by the way, very stylish. You know what they say about a man who wears glasses! Hehe!

Anyway, it's no surprise that Tim and Sue-Anne are on top of it! They haven't left the house in days! I can see Tim slumped over the keyboard right now... actually, it doesn't look like he's typing... or even moving... hmmm.. think I'd better get over there and investigate. Maybe prod him with a stick or something.
Message: Posted by: Chrystal (Mar 9, 2006 08:32PM)
Perhaps it could be he ate too much vegitmite?


Message: Posted by: Elly May Drudge (Mar 9, 2006 08:42PM)
No, my dear girl. You must try it, to understand it wouldn't do such a thing to Tim...

I just came back from his house and I can tell you, he's only suffering from a type of RSI from beating the keyboard to death trying to go from topic to topic answering questions and causing a bit of trouble. You know those games in the parlour where you have to hit the mice as they pop up in different places? The more you hit, the more points you score? Well, I'm much better at it from years of house pest control... and keeping an eye on those two. They'll get use to it.

Oh, and Rik... try flavouring rice - and vegie soups with vegemite. Easy does it, though. Go ahead and be creative dear. Just be careful with blood pressure. The stuff is very salty!
Message: Posted by: Michael J. Douglas (Mar 9, 2006 09:10PM)
Vegemite's some powerful stuff. Laboratory test show that Vegemite has 600% more vitamins than any other substance on earth by volume!

As a comparison of serving sizes -
Vegemite 5 grams
Butter 14 grams
Peanut Butter 32 grams
Easy Cheeze 31 grams

It's even sent up into space with Aussie astronauts!
Message: Posted by: Elly May Drudge (Mar 10, 2006 12:03AM)
I was just browsing the internet (I have ADSL2+ 24mps) and I see there's a lot of misunderstanding out there about what you can and cannot use vegemite for:

You can use it on popcorn, you cannot use it as an insect repellent.

You can use it as a celery dip, you cannot use it to keep dentures in place.

You can serve it on crackers like caviar, you cannot dry it out and smoke it.

You can use it as camouflage if you're a soldier, you cannot use it as car window tinting.

You can use it to cover your bald spot if you have black hair, you can't use it as a hair removal cream.

You can use it as a facial mask, you cannot use it as toothpaste.

You can smear it on a black toilet seat as a practical joke, you cannot seal leaky pipes with it.

You can use it to stick little bits of toilet paper to cat's faces and watch them lick it off (though I've no idea why you would), you cannot use it as any kind of lubricant.
Message: Posted by: Michael Sullivan (Mar 10, 2006 02:09AM)
Vegemite ROCKS!

I spread it on my Bread or Toast very thick, because I love it like that because it burns the roof of your mouth YUMMMMMMMMMMMMM.

My Mother told me that when I was a baby and I would cry she used to put some Vegemite on my dummy (pacifier) and it would shut me up.

I love Vegemite & Cheese as a great combination and now Kraft have a Cheese slice that is impregnated with Vegemite.

OH and for you Americans Kraft who produce Vegemite is now American owned.

Message: Posted by: Matt Pulsar (Mar 10, 2006 04:42AM)
Okay, this is how it was explained to me. Could be some fiction here. Most likely actually. But here I go. You make beer or alchohol from grain. You drink the alchi and your body is left without nutrients. After the process of making the beer you have some stuff left over. Essentially Vegimite or Marmite are the left over vitamins and stiff. (B vitamins are good for a hangover anyhow.) The Vegimite completes the grain needed in your body, and brings balance to your system. Easy.

P.S. what is a Cubbyhouse?
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 10, 2006 08:38AM)
LOL - A cubbyhouse is a "playhouse" generally made by parents for kids to play in in the backyard.

Mat LOVES building cubbyhouses! ;)

They can also be built by the kids themselves out of scrap materials in a vacant lot or, like mine was, under the house.
Message: Posted by: Simon Lovell (Mar 10, 2006 10:35AM)

Considering your love of the "Marmite wannabe" substance when are you going to release an effect or two using it? The Incredible self-working Appearing Vomit illusion (just eat some and wait) springs to mind as a starter .... yikes! Just kidding!

Message: Posted by: Matt Andrews (Mar 10, 2006 10:46AM)
OK Marmite and Vegemite lovers

If you once decide to come to Switzerland, you will find "Cenovis". The Cenovis paste is the long lost brother of Vegemite (quite similar to the taste) and also first or second cousin to Marmite (which is IMHO stronger and saltier).

Either you love it or you hate it. My wife can't stand any of these (yum, just for me then :))

And now back to Aussie Land :)

Sincerely, Matt
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 10, 2006 06:00PM)
Simon, it does work well when performing CARD ON CEILING with the Black Tiger Deck...
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 10, 2006 06:05PM)
Matt, you are right. Here is a complete list of Vegemite 'wannabees'

Bovril (The UK)
Mightymite (Australia)
Marmite (The UK)
Promite (Australia)
Cenovis (Swiss)
Dick Smith Foods' Aussiemite (created because Vegemite is now owned by an American-based firm)
Vitam-R (especially popular in Germany, but available in health food stores in the UK)

Note, there is no USA equivalent. The market is ripe for a Vegemite invasion!!!
Message: Posted by: Douglas.M (Mar 10, 2006 08:30PM)
Hullo Tim!

I haven't tried Vegemite, but there used to be a "down under" store in DC where I was able to get Tim Tams and Jelly Babies. Those Jelly Babies made Gummi Bears seem like flavored vinyl in comparison.

I also purchased a boomerang there (Lorin L. Hawes model that had "Read the bluddy instructions before throwing" printed right on it), and I have since become a devotee of 'rangin'.

There's Nothing like the feeling of letting one of those wooden birds go and then catching it (well, the classic force...).

Speaking of odd regional foods, the most popular soda in the U.S. in the 1920's was "Moxie" (formerly a Nerve Tonic); which apparently tastes like a menthol cigarette steeped in flat root beer. Some people swear by it (it's made a bit of a comback in Maine).

Douglas M.
Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 10, 2006 10:05PM)
Douglas, I know nothing about 'Moxie', but I am a soft drink (soda) connoisseur so I'm keen to give it a burl, however when it comes to Jelly Babies I am THE man!

Gummi's I have tried, and I must say I concur with your very descriptive review.

When it comes to Jelly Babies I always steer away from the British ones (they come dusted and have a sticky centre) and I actually prefer the more generic home-brand models. (Though Starburst Babies are growing on me).

For a real taste treat, try my own invention, 'Babies In A Blanket'.

Take a large pickled onion (I prefer 'Fletcher's' or 'White Crow') remove the centre and insert a Jelly Babie of any flavour. Bite into it and take a trip to heaven!
Message: Posted by: IT Magic (Mar 10, 2006 10:22PM)
Mmmm Tim Tams.........

nibble off chocolate from diagonally opposite corners, dip one end in coffee, port or some other approriate drink and suck thru' other hole. When drink reaches mouth stop sucking and eat choc coated gooey biscuit mess mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
Message: Posted by: Simon Lovell (Mar 11, 2006 11:25AM)

We certainly agree on one food group. Large pickled onions are, quite simply, heaven!

Thankfully, due to the opening of Brit stores here in the USA, I can get them. Ahhhh ... a good baseball game, a six pack of long boys and a jar of pickled onions is a fine way to spend a day!


Message: Posted by: Tim Ellis (Mar 11, 2006 03:28PM)
I'll even agree with you on baseball Simon. I didn't think I'd like it but some friends took us to a baseball game in Houston and it was action-packed! Thanks to lots of video clips and crowd interaction every "dead spot" was filled with something or other going on. Much more like a piece of entertainment than a sport!

I can see why Americans, brought up on baseball, find cricket to be a little slow.
Message: Posted by: IT Magic (Mar 11, 2006 04:37PM)
Cricket IS a little slow :)
Message: Posted by: Sue-Anne Webster (Mar 11, 2006 11:42PM)

Tammii - from Tammii Twister's Magic Factory in Melbourne, tries to get ALL our overseas lecturers and performers to do the TIM TAM SLAM! Just like Brenden described!!

FUN -NY! We have magicians from different countries doing some REALLY STRANGE and bizaar reactions to it. Maybe Boris Wild can describe it - I THINK it's he who can do a GREAT rendition of the experience.


Aaaahhh - the night's we sit up late at after a lecture or show, watching visitors do this!