Leipäjuusto

All cheeses from Finland

Leipäjuusto (lit. 'bread cheese') or juustoleipä, which is also known in English as Finnish squeaky cheese, is a fresh cheese traditionally made from cow's beestings, rich milk from a cow that has recently calved. Reindeer or even goat milk can also be used. Commercially available versions are typically made from regular milk, and they lack some colour and flavour because of this. The cheese originally comes from Ostrobothnia, Northern Finland and Kainuu.

The milk is curdled and set to form a round disk from two to three centimeters thick. After this, leipäjuusto is baked, grilled or flambéed to give it its distinctive brown or charred marks. In Ostrobothnia, leipäjuusto is called juustoleipä (lit. 'cheese bread'). However, this varies as people have moved around, and both names are used while leipäjuusto is the more commonly known name for this cheese. Other dialects have various names (such as narskujuusto) that refer to the way that fresh leipäjuusto "squeaks" against the teeth when bitten.

Traditionally, leipäjuusto was dried and could then be stored for up to several years. For eating, the dry, almost rock hard cheese was heated on a fire which softened it and produced an especially appetizing aroma. Even today, the cheese may be dried by keeping it in a well ventilated place for a few days. It has a quite mild flavour.

Leipäjuusto can be eaten warm or cold.

Wikipedia