Juustoleipa

Cheese for breakfast? Yes! Juustoleipa!

I used to think that the idea of eating cheese for breakfast was disgusting, (I’d conveniently forgotten that I ate cheddar or provolone in omelets all the time,) but then I came across “bread cheese,” or, as the Finns call it, “Juustoleipa.” (“Juustoleipa” is pronounced, according to the Juusto website,  as “hoo-stah-lee-pah.”)  It was originally made out of reindeer milk, (Imagine milking a reindeer! Sounds very dangerous. Here’s a Youtube video from “DeparturesTV” for the curious….) but these days it’s usually made from goat or cow milk.  It has a crust that looks like bread, (hence the name “bread cheese,”) and it’s mild enough to eat first thing in the morning.  Some people grill it, but one can just microwave it for 20-30 seconds or so if in a hurry.  It will look a little greasy when done, but if you have a cautious morning-stomach just think of it as “glistening-ness” instead of “greasiness” and you should be all right.  Note: it’s also sometimes referred to as “squeaky cheese,” because it squeaks against one’s teeth.  (This is a quiet, fun, just-for-yourself squeak, not a squeak-for-everyone-else-to-hear-too squeak, though.) Its mild taste makes it a good vehicle for other breakfast treats: it’s good eaten straight with jelly, and many like to dunk it in  coffee.  According to the eatwisconsincheese website, “mothers of eligible women used to offer suitors a cup of coffee with the cheese and, if the man liked the cheese, he married the girl!”

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