Friday, October 10, 2014

Brown cheese (Geitost)

When I was a kid, once in a while my mom would buy "goat cheese," which was what she called this brown, rich, sweet stuff.  She'd slice it very thin and I'd let it melt on my tongue.  Later in life I realized the more common use of "goat cheese" was chèvre, the white, crumbly goat cheese.  So then I was left wondering what the brown stuff is.  I knew it had Scandinavian roots, probably Norwegian, and Steve said his dad called it something like gjetost. (Usually I don't speculate for so long before googling for an answer, but maybe speculation is becoming a lost art we need to cultivate). Wikipedia tells me there's all kinds of names for it, most meaning "brown cheese," and it is made by boiling which I guess is like the goat cheese equivalent of making dulce de leche from a can of sweetened condensed milk.
Well, now I'm in Scandinavia, and today I saw it at the grocery store.  A Norwegian brand, complete with rosemåling as if it were straight out of Frozen.  The cashier was probably in her 60s and when she picked it up she stared at it for a good twenty seconds before scanning it.  (One check-out line second is like five regular seconds when there are people waiting in line behind me, so it felt like a small eternity).  I asked if she had ever tried it, but she didn't answer so I just let it go.  So maybe it's not that common in Sweden. You can find it in the States at larger grocery stores.  Once while visiting a Wegmans I asked the cheese person what she would pair with it, and she said it has a caramel flavor to it so she suggests apples.  The cheese is very rich and a little dry, so the juicy apple works well.

No comments: