Discovering Kotijuusto cheese of Finland

Exploring the Delicate Delights of Kotijuusto – Finland’s Pride in Cheesemaking

Moving away from the well-trodden trio of Brie, Cheddar, and Parmesan, we’re about to embark on a culinary journey to the northern reaches of Europe, specifically Finland, to discover a true hidden jewel in the world of cheese – Kotijuusto, also known as Finnish squeaky cheese. This evocative and distinct cheese variety holds a special place in Finland’s dairy heritage, exhibiting a melt-in-mouth quality, and a unique ‘squeak’ against the teeth when bitten into, giving it its delightful nickname.

Kotijuusto is a fresh cheese made traditionally from cow’s milk, or more unusually, from a blend of reindeer and cow’s milk, a particularity owed to its geographic roots. Its subtle flavor profile is a blend of delicate milky sweetness underpinned by a gentle tang. With its pale to sunshine yellow hue, and neatly cut rectangular slabs, Kotijuusto is visually distinctive, adding an enticing element to your cheese platter.

What really sets Kotijuusto apart, however, is the process and tradition behind its production. Unlike many Western styles of cheese made using some form of bacterial starter and rennet, Kotijuusto is made by heating milk to a precise simmering point, then gradually adding leftover whey which has been acidified. This causes the protein in the milk to coagulate and form curds. These curds are then strained and moulded into rectangular shapes, before being baked or broiled until a golden-brown crust forms. This crust is not only visually appealing, but it also imparts a slightly caramelized flavor which enrichens the cheese’s overall taste.

In Finland, Kotijuusto is often coupled with luscious cloudberry jam, its sweetness wonderfully offsetting the mellow tang of the cheese. Alternatively, it can be savoured in its gloriously bare form, allowing its characteristic ‘squeaky’ texture and mild flavor to take centre stage.

  • Country of Origin: Finland
  • Milk Type: Cow’s milk, occasionally blended with reindeer milk
  • Texture: Squeaky, moist, and soft
  • Color: Pale to sunshine yellow
  • Flavor: Mild, slight tang, hint of caramelisation due to the outer crust
  • Pairing: Best served with cloudberry jam, or on its own

Discovering Kotijuusto cheese of Finland: Test your knowledge!

Welcome to our quiz on the topic of 'Kotijuusto cheese of Finland'! Discover how well you know the traditional Finnish cheese variety, its production process, and its place in Finnish culture. Are you ready to test your knowledge and uncover some interesting facts about this unique dairy product? Let's cheese it up!

Celebrating the Richness of Kotijuusto: Ingredients, Properties, and Varieties

When it comes to exceptional cheeses that bear the weight of centuries-old traditions, Kotijuusto – a meticulously crafted Finnish baked cheese – stands tall. Revered in the world of gourmands for its unique texture and sublime taste, Kotijuusto forms an inseparable part of the Finnish culinary linage, imbued with a rich cultural significance. A more in-depth look into this Nordic cheese’s ingredients, properties, and varieties reveals the craftsmanship behind it.

Made primarily from cow’s milk, kotijuusto also has versions crafted from reindeer and even goat’s milk, reflecting the tenacity of Finnish herders in harsh climates. The milk is combined with other essential ingredients, such as rennet to induce curdling, and salt for flavor. The cheese is then typically baked or broiled until a brown crust forms, resulting in a beautiful contrast between the hard crust and soft cheese within. Its rich, buttery taste with an undertow of caramelized milk makes it a perfect companion for cloudberry jam, another Finnish delicacy. When hot, kotijuusto has a squeaky, elastic mouthfeel, but it becomes more crumbly upon cooling.

Despite the basic recipe for kotijuusto remaining largely untouched, some regional variants exist that paint a vibrant palette of flavors and textures, including:

  • “Juustoleipä”, a special variety from Northern Finland, is an intriguing version where the cheese loaves are cold smoked, introducing a subtle, smoky aroma that synergizes with its inherent milky sweetness, creating a balance that’s hard to resist.
  • “Leipäjuusto”, literally translating to bread cheese, is another popular variant, often served in cubes and toasted, with its name coming from its bread-like appearance after cooking.

Such variations indeed bear testimony to the adaptability and diversity this cheese offers within its repertoire.

In conclusion, kotijuusto, with its rich flavors and textures, encapsulates a fantastic gastronomic adventure. Its unique properties coupled with its intriguing regional varieties make it an epitome of traditional Finnish cheesemaking wisdom and undoubtedly an experience to be savored.

Exploring the Traditional Finnish Cheese: Kotijuusto

Embark on a gastronomical adventure and discover the unique flavors of traditional Finnish cheese with Kotijuusto. Originating from Finland, this delectable cheese has been enjoyed by cheese connoisseurs for centuries.

Produced primarily in the northern regions of Finland, Kotijuusto holds a special place in Finnish cuisine. The name “Kotijuusto” translates to “home cheese,” emphasizing the homemade and artisanal nature of this exquisite cheese. Made from cow’s milk, Kotijuusto is a fresh cheese that is known for its delicate texture and mild flavor.

Meticulously crafted by skilled cheese artisans, Kotijuusto undergoes a traditional cheese-making process that has been passed down through generations. The cheese curds are gently heated, which helps to retain the natural creaminess of the milk. These curds are then pressed, resulting in a soft, yet firm cheese that is perfect for slicing or grating.

When it comes to serving Kotijuusto, the possibilities are endless. It can be enjoyed on its own, as a delightful appetizer or paired with your favorite crackers. The mild flavor of Kotijuusto also makes it a versatile ingredient in various dishes, from salads to sandwiches and even desserts.

So, if you’re a cheese lover looking to expand your palate or simply curious about the hidden gems of Finnish cuisine, indulge in the exquisite taste of Kotijuusto. With its rich history and delightful flavors, this traditional Finnish cheese is sure to leave you craving for more.

Key Features of Kotijuusto:

  • Made from cow’s milk
  • Fresh cheese with a delicate texture
  • Mild flavor
  • Traditional cheese-making process
  • Can be served on its own or incorporated into various dishes

Facts and figures

  • In Finland, cheese has a particularly important place in the daily diet.
  • More than 20 kinds of cheese are produced in Finland.
  • Finland ranks 16th in the European Union for cheese production.
  • Kotijuusto is a traditional Finnish breakfast dish and a popular dessert.
  • Kotijuusto cheese is a high-protein and high-calcium food.
  • The cheesemaking tradition in Finland dates back centuries.
  • The Finns consume an average of 24 kg of cheese per person per year.

Delicious Pairings and Dishes with Authentic Kotijuusto Cheese

Known as the “squeaky cheese” of the Finnish cuisine, Kotijuusto is a delightfully unique, fresh cheese revered by cheese aficionados. Its locally rich, skillfully made pies and warming winter dishes with its presence speak to the heart of Finnish simplicity and love for comfort food. Today, we will delve into two tantalizing recipes featuring this hearty dairy product: the traditional Kotijuusto-Honey Parfait and an innovative take on a comforting classic with the Creamy Kotijuusto Biscuits and Gravy.

Kotijuusto-Honey Parfait:

  • Ingredients: 100g Kotijuusto cheese, 2 dl blueberries, 100g honey, 100g granola.
  • Directions: In a parfait glass, start with a layer of granola followed by a layer of cubed Kotijuusto. Layer some blueberries, followed by drizzle of honey over the berries. Repeat the layers until you fill up the glass. Finish off with a generous drizzle of honey. Continue this process until you’ve filled as many parfait glasses as needed. Let the parfait refrigerate for a couple of hours before serving.

This delicious layering of ingredients allows the mildly sweet taste of the Kotijuusto cheese to get an ultimate uplift, both in terms of flavor and texture. The burst of blueberries, the crunch of granola, and the succulent drizzle of honey complements it perfectly to create a refreshing dessert. What’s more, you can switch blueberries with your preference of fresh fruits to savor this layered dessert in multiple ways.

Creamy Kotijuusto Biscuits and Gravy:

  • Ingredients: 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup cold butter, 1/2 cup buttermilk, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking powder, 100g crumbled Kotijuusto cheese, 2 cups of heavy cream, 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan, 1/2 cup of crispy fried onions.
  • Directions: Preheat your oven to 220°C. In a bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, and salt. Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the buttermilk just until moistened. Fold in the crumbled Kotijuusto. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to 3/4 inch thickness. Cut into rounds with a biscuit cutter. Place on a baking sheet, and bake until golden brown, around 15-20 minutes. In a pan, on medium flame, pour heavy cream. Stir in Parmesan until you get a thick smooth mixture. Pour this sauce over the biscuits, and finish with a sprinkle of crispy fried onions.

Making use of Kotijuusto cheese in this Southern American favorite takes it to new gourmet heights. The mild flavor of the cheese beautifully incorporates the flavors of the luscious gravy and the crunchy fried onions add a delightful contrast. It brings a Nordic twist to a classic, proving the versatility of Kotijuusto in international cuisine.

The Perfect Pairing: Wines and Dishes to Savour with Kotijuusto

In the vast landscape of cheese, the Finnish fresh cheese known as Kotijuusto occupies a cherished niche. Characterized by its mild taste and peculiar spongy texture, its delightful simplicity allows it to seamlessly blend into a host of dishes and pair beautifully with numerous wines.

Kotijuusto enthralls with its unique profile, making it a versatile companion to wines that reflect its cheery simplicity. Specifically, white wines with good acidity are an ideal match as they complement its gentle flavor without overshadowing it. Chenin Blanc from Loire Valley in France, for instance, with its light to medium body and finely tuned acidity, forms a harmonious balance with Kotijuusto. The aromatic intensity and zesty edge of a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc add another dimension to the textures of Kotijuusto, making them a pair to relish. Meanwhile, the liveliness and bright fruit undertones of an Italian Verdicchio can provide a pleasantly refreshing contrast to the milky flavors of this Finnish cheese.

When it comes to dishes, the mild and slightly sweet taste of Kotijuusto lends itself to both savory and sweet culinary creations, ranging from soups and salads to desserts:

  • Crumbled over a fresh green salad, Kotijuusto adds a layer of delicate creaminess, beautifully melding with the crispness of fresh lettuce and the tangy punch of vinaigrette.
  • In the realms of soups, it works wonders as a topping for a hearty vegetable soup — its sponginess soaking up the savory broth and adding a delightful textural contrast.
  • Kotijuusto is also an excellent choice for dessert. Tossed with wild berries and a drizzle of Finnish honey, it makes for a light and sophisticated dessert, reflective of the pure, natural flavors of the Nordic region.

In all, Kotijuusto is more than just a cheese; it’s a testament to Finnish culinary tradition and culture. Despite its modest origin, it offers a surprisingly versatile range of taste experiences, quietly accommodating multiple pairs and fusions. With some thoughtful culinary experimentation and matching, Kotijuusto can indeed lift an ordinary meal into a memorable gastronomic journey.

Similar Cheeses for Kotijuusto

Kotijuusto, also known as Finnish squeaky cheese, is a delicious and unique variety of cheese that originates from Finland. It is made from cow’s milk and has a mild and slightly tangy flavor. Kotijuusto is known for its characteristic squeaky texture, which is achieved by cooking the cheese at a low temperature. It is typically served warm or grilled, making it a popular choice for traditional Finnish dishes.

If you are a fan of Kotijuusto and looking to explore similar cheeses from around the world, there are a few options that you might enjoy:

  • Haloumi: Originating from Cyprus, Haloumi is a semi-hard cheese made from sheep’s milk or a combination of sheep’s and goat’s milk. It has a similar squeaky texture when cooked and can be grilled or fried. Haloumi has a salty flavor and is often enjoyed as a delicious appetizer or in salads.
  • Paneer: Originally from India, Paneer is a fresh cheese made from cow’s milk. Like Kotijuusto, it has a firm and squeaky texture when cooked. Paneer is commonly used in Indian cuisine, where it is often added to curries or grilled and served as a main dish.
  • Oaxaca: Hailing from Mexico, Oaxaca cheese is a semi-soft, stringy cheese made from cow’s milk. It has a mild and slightly sweet flavor and a texture that becomes stretchy when melted. Oaxaca cheese is commonly used in Mexican cuisine, particularly in dishes like quesadillas and enchiladas.
  • Queso de Bola: Queso de Bola is a popular cheese from the Netherlands and is also known as Edam cheese. It is a semi-hard cheese made from cow’s milk and has a mild and slightly nutty flavor. Queso de Bola is typically enjoyed on its own or grated over salads and pastas.

Exploring similar cheeses to Kotijuusto can be a delightful way to discover new flavors and textures in the world of cheese. Whether you enjoy grilling, frying, or simply enjoying it on its own, these cheeses offer a satisfying experience for cheese enthusiasts.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

About the author: Dr. Wolfgang Sender writes on international careers. He is founder of and

Scroll to Top