A Story of Norwegian Cheese, Brunost by Paul Colman

British–Australian pop-rock guitarist, vocalist, pianist, and composer Paul colman tastes Norwegian brown cheese Brunost and shares his experience.

Brunost or mysost is a caramelised brown whey cheese. The main Norwegian names mean brown cheese. Another variant, made using goat milk, is referred to and sold as geitost (Norwegian for “goat cheese”) or sometimes elsewhere as gjetost. Geitost is made from a mixture of goat’s and cow’s milk, and ekte geitost (real geitost) is made with goat’s milk only.

Brunost is made by boiling a mixture of milk, cream, and whey carefully for several hours so that the water evaporates. The heat turns the milk sugar into caramel, which gives the cheese its characteristic brown colour and sweet taste.

Our reader from Sagene, Ellen Marie Gulbrandsen describes the preparation of this special cheese as follows:

  • It’s the skimmed milk that is heated up – slowly. When it is lukewarm you add an enzyme (rennet) to make the curd separate from the fluid. The curd is removed (from this you can make real cheese), and you stir and stir for hours. You cannot leave it for a minute. It’s important that it is not so hot that it burns in the bottom. When you’ve got a thick mass you add some cream, and then put the mass in forms. That was the oldfashioned way of making Brown cheese. Before the cheese hardned the children was eager to taste. It was like sweets for us at that time – about sixty years ago.