Yes, I received a tube of Vegemite in my box from Australia. If you weren’t around for my lessons on the subject, when I was overseas, Vegemite is made from yeast extract, and Aussies live on it. Literally. The first time you see a jar of it, you might think you’re about to get Nutella out of it, but don’t be deceived. It isn’t sweet, but savory, and tastes a bit like beef bouillon. At first taste, it can be quite strong, as you’re not expecting the flavor, so start lightly.
When I first tried it again, this time, I spread butter on my bread, and then added the Vegemite. I used a very little bit, because I was afraid my memories were wrong, and that maybe I wouldn’t like it as much, this time. I was wrong. I think I like it more than when I was overseas. I then spread another slice, very lightly, with butter and Vegemite, for my mom and brother to try. They could barely taste it, but admitted to the similarity to bouillon. I then grossed out my mother by admitting to occasionally licking the spoon, after using beef or chicken base to make soup (there was only a little left on the spoon!). That’s why I’m familiar with THAT taste.
After the original taste test, I haven’t remembered to offer any to my family again, and they’ve probably forgotten about it. I think every person has to get past the idea that it will taste sugary, and then they might just like it. If you ease them into it, like my Aussie family did. Of course, my Aussie kids couldn’t understand why Americans don’t eat Vegemite, but then, explaining what Wikipedia told me about using food stamps to get Vegemite during WWII… it didn’t really make an impact on them. To their minds, Americans should just try it, they’ll love it, and never look back. I know my countrymen a bit better. : )
Last week, my mom made homemade Italian bread to eat with spaghetti and homemade meatballs, and I eventually tried the Vegemite on leftover Italian bread. Yes, with butter. It was SO good. And a few nights ago, I really had a craving for something savory… so what better choice is there? No, I won’t be eating it constantly, because all that bread isn’t really a healthy choice. But Vegemite and I will not be parting ways any time soon. If you’re American, and you’re brave enough, give it a try.