Austria is well known for many different types of food – some you will definitely have heard of: strudel, schnitzel, goulash etc. Each region also has specialities they call their own. Though consider that Austria has nine states in a total of 84,000km² (compare that to Australia’s 8 in 7.7million km²) – this means that a dish ‘local’ to one area is very often found in other places too.
I live in the state of Carinthia (Kärnten) and I work in the state of Steiermark (Styria), so I’m familiar with quite a few.
I’ve already talked about Kärntner Nudeln and this week I’m focusing on Glundner Käse.
This is another traditional Carinthian dish, or actually, it’s more like an accompaniment. It is served in Jause stations everywhere in the state… and Austrians love it. I have to admit, it’s not really my thing, but each to their own!
Glundner Käse is made from a mix of cheese (topfen), butter and of course, cumin, and is best eaten spread on dark bread (with a thin layer of butter beneath), and sometimes a healthy sprinkling of pepper. It’s kind of smelly, and kind of runny and hard at the same time. To me it’s sort of like that science experiment you did as a kid, the goo that looks liquid when left alone but as soon as you put in a knife you meet resistance.
You can buy it in shops but a lot of people here prepare and cook it up themselves. Apparently it smells a lot worse when you’re making it, but it’s definitely still got a bit of tang to taste. So if you’re a stinky cheese fan, definitely give it a go if you’re in the area!