DIY Marmite only for the brave
While panicking fans of New Zealand Marmite fruitlessly scour shop shelves for jars of their favourite yeasty spread, the truly devoted are looking for ways to make a DIY version.
Kerstin Rodgers, a UK chef and pioneer of the underground restaurant movement who is passionate about Marmite, said she spent a year refining a homemade version of the black stuff.
Rodgers, who is also known as MsMarmiteLover, said she ate Marmite every day, served it on toast as a canape at her supper club parties and featured recipes using Marmite in her book, said she was horrified to hear of the New Zealand shortage.
"I really feel for you," she said. "I've tried New Zealand Marmite and I think it's bloody disgusting, but it's all to do with what you're brought up on, isn't it? I was a Marmite baby, so that's always been the one for me."
Her recipe, which she developed after consultation with the 'quality and innovation expert' at English Marmite's HQ in Burton on Trent, is not the sort of thing you can whip up before breakfast.
Rodgers estimated the process takes about 10 days of careful simmering, filtering and evaporating before the mixture reaches something approximating Marmite. Even then, she said it tasted "different, like something German and healthy in a tube".
"I've been working on it for a year and I've just come up with a new tweak because the original version was quite bitter. There's no sweetness in English Marmite at all."
Despite the lengthy process Rodgers said she would probably make her own Marmite rather than turn to substitutes.
"If there's a nuclear winter or an earthquake or something then it's good to know I can make my own."
Are you tempted to have a go at making your own Marmite?