Michael Eriksson's Blog

A Swede in Germany

Follow-up: Osthyvlar and cheese in Sweden and Germany

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I have earlier written about my disappointing experiences with osthyvlar in Germany.

Since then:

  1. My osthyvel was so over-challenged by a stubborn piece of cheese that it slipped, hit my left thumb, and sliced roughly half a cm2 of skin and flesh almost off. (The piece remained connected by a thin strip of skin on one side.) I used osthyvlar in Sweden from a fairly early childhood until I left for German at age 22, and nothing even remotely similar ever happened.

    Obviously, I resolved to never use this particular osthyvel again. Equally obviously, someone with no prior experiences, e.g. the typical German, would have been quite likely to curse osthyvlar as pointless and dangerous, making the introduction of this wonderful tool even harder than it already is (cf. the orginal text).

  2. The next few weeks, I took the opportunity to look for another osthyvel in any likely store that I came across. Most had none at all. The few that I found were usually severely over-priced. This includes other examples of the substandard model that I had rejected at 9.9x Euro and other models going up well above twenty Euro. This for an item that is basically quite cheap and can be had for just two or three Euro in Sweden,* and in a situation where it would make sense to buy several models for experimentation. At this point, I was torn between asking my father to send me a good model and just canceling the experiment entirely (note the other complications mentioned in the original text).

    *As with many such products, there is no real upper limit on price, be it in Sweden or Germany, and the functionality and quality does not correlate well with the price. The problem seems to be that the German stores only go for over-priced “design” or “brand” models (if any at all), while the Swedish market covers the entire spectrum.

  3. At this point, looking for something else, I stumbled upon a 3.9x Euro item in a store that I already had visited without success.* I bought one—and found it to be clearly superior to my original 9.9x Euro specimen, again proving that prices tell little about quality. Most of the issues in my original text remain, but slicing Emmentaler and (even young) Gouda is now possible without effort and risk.

    *Specifically, Kodi. I do not know whether this item will continue to be sold or whether it was a short-term experiment.

Excursion on a previous injury:
While I have never had any prior incident with an osthyvel, I did once get a similar cut through a knife (and on the same thumb): My first year in Germany, with little money and equipment, I used a too blunt (non-bread) knife to cut a too stale piece of bread. I held the bread in my hand to try to get more (for want of a better word) traction than on a cutting board. The knife slipped with considerable force and a similar result. With the knife, I was behaving stupidly and the result was, with hindsight, not that unexpected; with the osthyvel, I did nothing wrong and the event would not have taken place, had the osthyvel been of an acceptable quality.

On the upside, this time I was sufficiently wise to immediately press the almost-sliced-off piece back onto the wound and applying a band-aid. It reconnected very soon and the resulting scar looks to be a lot smaller than the last time around, even after adjusting for the smaller wound.

Written by michaeleriksson

November 1, 2019 at 3:50 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , , ,

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