Shopping around: Brie
It's only when I have to really think about a food, like avocado or cashew nuts or cheese for example, that the mystery of my less-than svelte-body type becomes, well, less mysterious. My love for cheese outweighs (no pun intended) my affection for most other things. From sweet slices of gouda to the full-on sensual feast of a heady époisses (which I'm only allowed to have in the house for 24 hours as otherwise the smell becomes overpowering), this dairy product is to me what cake was to Marie-Antoinette.
Brie is not in my top three cheeses, but a decent version with a piece of crusty bread and a glass of wine is still a near-unbeatable combination and a very cheap way to entertain.
Oh, and maybe keep them under a glass dome if you're expecting guests – not everyone loves the smell of it the way I do.
Tesco St Brendan Brie
Price: €4.31 (190g)
Verdict: Tesco's in-house cheese counters are incredibly well-stocked, particularly in the bigger stores. This is a grand big hunk of very soft brie, that collapses and oozes out from its curd like a slab of melting ice-cream between wafers. Deliciously gooey and pungent.
No nutritional information available.
Marks and Spencer's Mild and Creamy Brie
Price €2.19 (170g)
Verdict: Marks and Spencer's everyday brie does well in this challenge. At €2.19, it is the cheapest (although it is the smallest portion). But it is also my favourite sort of brie – soft, mild and with a very creamy in texture.
Per 100g, you get 355 calories, 17g of protein, 32g fat, 0.2g sugar.
Aldi Ardagh Specially Selected Tipperary Brie
Price €2.99 (200g)
Verdict: This is a firmer type, and won't really ooze unless you melt it under a grill. It is not as pungent either so makes for a good everyday brie that will hold its shape in sandwiches.
Per 100g, you get 312 calories, 17g of protein, 26.8g of fat trace of sugars.