Brunost (meaning “brown cheese”) is a smooth, semi-firm cheese that is buff-coloured, like the colour of brown envelopes, with a sweet and sour caramel taste.
Made in Norway, Brunost Cheese is 25% of all the cheese eaten there.
It is made from whey, from both cow’s milk or goat’s milk. A mixed version of Brunost Cheese made from both cow’s and goat’s milk whey has a milder taste and is more popular with children.
To make Brunost Cheese, cream and milk are added to whey, and brought to a boil, then reduced to a simmer and stirred constantly for about 3 hours. The milk mixture thickens as water evaporates. While this happens, the lactose sugar in the milk caramelizes, and turns the whey slightly brown. Eventually the mixture becomes a light brown paste (literally.)
It is then removed from the heat and stirred as it cools to keep it smooth and to prevent it from becoming granular (if you are attempting this at home, it needs to be whisked to stop the sugars from crystallizing.) Then it is poured into rectangular or round moulds, let set, then it is unmoulded.
It needs no aging; it is ready to sell on as soon as it’s unmoulded and packaged.
Brunost Cheese can be eaten for breakfast, or with fruit cake as it slices very well.
Some people really dislike the taste and the texture.
- Ski Queen brand Gjetost – half cow’s milk, half goat’s milk. No rind;
- Ekte Gjetost (real Gjetost) – made from goat’s whey, darker colour and richer flavour than Ski Queen brand Gjetost;
- Flotemysost – made from cow’s milk whey, enriched with cow’s milk cream;
- Gudbrandsdalsost – both cow’s and goat’s milk. 10 to 12 % goat’s milk. Most popular;
- Mysost – made from all cow’s milk whey. In Norwegian, “myse” means “whey” and “ost” means “cheese”;
- Prim – cow’s milk with sugar added. Boiled for less time than all other kinds.
Brunost Cheese has 30% fat content.Nutrition FactsPer 1 oz (28 g) Ski-Queen GjetostAmountCalories130Fat9 gSaturated6 gTrans0 gCholesterol30 mgCarbohydrate11 gFibre0 gSugars7 gProtein3 g
The invention of Brunost Cheese is attributed to an Anne Haav, who worked for a creamy in the Gudbrands valley in Norway. In the summer of 1863, she did an experiment of adding cream to whey before bringing the whey to a boil. She ended up with a brown cheese and, so the story goes, the idea caught on. Later, others got the idea of doing the same thing with goat’s milk (goats being easier to rear in mountainous Norway.) In 1933, reputedly, at the age of 87, she received a medal from the King of Norway (who in 1933 who have been Haakon VII, a Danish prince) for her invention. If she were 87 in 1933, that would make her 17 when she came up with the idea in 1863.
“Brunost” means “brown cheese.”
Gjetost is pronounced “yet-oast”. It is actually called “geitost” now in Norway, but export packages still say gjetost. “Gjet” or “geit” in Norwegian means “goat”; “Ost” in Norwegian means “cheese”.
Brunost Cheese is sometimes also called Gudbrandsdalsost – Gudbrand is the name of a valley, “dal” meaning “valley”, and “ost” meaning “cheese.”