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Vasterbottenost

Flickr / NatalieMaynor / CC BY 2.0
  • Made from pasteurized cow's milk

  • Country of origin: Sweden

  • Region: Burträsk

  • Family: Parmesan

  • Type: hard, artisan

  • Fat content: 31%

  • Texture: crumbly, grainy and open

  • Rind: waxed

  • Colour: pale yellow

  • Flavour: full-flavored, salty, sweet

  • Aroma: aromatic, strong

  • Vegetarian: no

  • Producers: Norrmejerier

  • Alternative spellings: Västerbotten

In 1872, Eleonora Lindstrom of Sweden accidentally discovered the recipe of Västerbottensost when the milk was left to curdle longer than needed. It is produced only by the Norrmejerier Swedish dairy company at their Burträsk farm. The Swedes salute it as the “Emperor of cheeses”.

Västerbottensost is a hard, granular cheese with a distinct character and powerful aromatic aroma. The taste is similar to Parmesan cheese, salty but with sweeter notes. Also, the texture is crumblier than an Italian Parmigianino Reggiano. It is a slow-maturing cheese with a minimum of a one-year ripening period. Light yellow in colour, Västerbottensost is a full-fat cheese containing 31% fat. Since the production is limited, it is twice as expensive as other aged cheeses. It is usually produced in the shape of a wheel, with smooth, yellow waxed rind.

Swedish enjoy this cheese at August crayfish parties, and it is a must ingredient in the highly popular Västerbotten cheese pie.

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