Gouda is a special kind of cheese. It presents itself in so many different ways, made by employing so many different techniques -- young and mild, smoked and hearty, aged into a state of sweet funkiness -- it is like the chameleon of cheese.

First mentioned sometime around the year 1184, Gouda may be one of the oldest recorded cheeses still being produced today. It's named after the city of Gouda in the Netherlands, but cheese is now made in the Gouda style all over the world. Most people are familiar with the soft, pale, mild, young Gouda encased in bright red wax. But Gouda is also one of the best cheeses to ever be smoked, and also takes to aging particularly well. Aged Gouda was the first cheese that taught us how delightful the formation of salt crystals inside aged cheese can be, and we've never forgotten it. This Dutch creation is one of our favorite cheeses to eat on its own, to melt onto things and to cook with, in general. We've pulled together 15 compelling Gouda-recipe-reasons why in the slideshow below.

Want to read more from HuffPost Taste? Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Tumblr.

Loading Slideshow...
  • Smoked Gouda Mashed Potatoes

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.lifeasastrawberry.com/smoked-gouda-mashed-potatoes/" target="_blank">Smoked Gouda Mashed Potatoes recipe from Life As A Strawberry</a></strong>

  • BBQ Chicken Nachos

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.macheesmo.com/2010/09/bbq-chicken-nachos/" target="_blank">BBQ Chicken Nachos recipe from Macheesmo</a></strong>

  • Peach, Bacon + Gouda Grilled Cheese Sliders On Pretzel Bread

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.howsweeteats.com/2012/07/peach-bacon-gouda-grilled-cheese-sliders-on-pretzel-bread/" target="_blank">Peach, Bacon + Gouda Grilled Cheese Sliders on Pretzel Bread recipe from How Sweet It Is</a></strong>

  • Spinach, Mushroom And Bacon Fondue

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.steamykitchen.com/11941-spinach-mushroom-and-bacon-cheese-fondue.html" target="_blank">Spinach, Mushroom and Bacon Fondue recipe from Steamy Kitchen</a></strong>

  • Multigrain Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/multigrain-grilled-cheese_n_1058571.html" target="_blank">Multigrain Grilled Cheese Sandwiches</a> recipe</strong>

  • Mushroom, Sweet Potato And Smoked Gouda Chowder

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.ahintofhoney.com/2012/04/mushroom-sweet-potato-and-smoked-gouda.html?m=1" target="_blank">Mushroom, Sweet Potato and Smoked Gouda Chowder recipe from A Hint of Honey</a></strong>

  • Bite-Size Bulgogi Burgers

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/bite-size-bulgogi-burgers_n_1061464.html" target="_blank">Bite-Size Bulgogi Burgers</a> recipe</strong>

  • Mini Mushroom Galettes

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://alwayswithbutter.blogspot.com/2011/04/so-i-have-got-growing-fondness-for.html?showComment=1304181123150" target="_blank">Mini Mushroom Galettes recipe from Always With Butter</a></strong>

  • Macaroni And Many Cheeses

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/macaroni-and-many-cheeses_n_1058531.html" target="_blank">Macaroni and Many Cheeses</a> recipe</strong>

  • French Onion Grilled Cheese

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.annies-eats.com/2012/04/30/french-onion-grilled-cheese/" target="_blank">French Onion Grilled Cheese recipe from Annie's Eats</a></strong>

  • Baked Butternut Squash And Cheese Polenta

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/baked-butternut-squash-an_n_1058215.html" target="_blank">Baked Butternut Squash and Cheese Polenta</a> recipe</strong>

  • Piled Portobello Gouda Burgers With Roasted Garlic

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.howsweeteats.com/2011/05/piled-portobello-gouda-burgers-with-roasted-garlic/" target="_blank">Piled Portobello Gouda Burgers with Roasted Garlic recipe from How Sweet It Is</a></strong>

  • Classic French Omelette With Chives And Smoked Gouda

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://slimpalate.com/classic-french-omelette-with-chives-and-smoked-gouda-paleo-primal-grain-free-gluten-free/" target="_blank">Classic French Omelette with Chives and Smoked Gouda recipe from SlimPalate</a></strong>

  • Pear And Smoked Gouda Dutch Baby

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://food52.com/recipes/7815-pear-and-smoked-gouda-dutch-baby" target="_blank">Pear and Smoked Gouda Dutch Baby recipe from Food52</a></strong>

  • Apple Tart Tatins With Cheese-Baked Pastry And Sticky Caramel

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/apple-tart-tatins-with-ch_n_1057675.html" target="_blank">Apple Tart Tatins with Cheese-Baked Pastry and Sticky Caramel</a> recipe</strong>