Swedish delicacies part 1: Västerbottenpaj
After moving to Umeå, I’ve been fascinated of local dishes and learning how to prepare them. The food culture in Sweden is fairly similar to Finland and most traditional dishes are really simple and made of just few ingredients. This was partly due to the fact that winters are long and the options with food were few.
Västerbotten cheese (Västerbottensost) is a hard cheese produced in the Västerbotten region of northern Sweden. It is the main ingredient of Västerbottenpaj. I made my Västerbottenpaj with just plain cheese, but you can add ingredients to suit your taste, for instance spinach, ham, broccoli, etc.
For a Västerbottenpaj (6-8 servings) you need:
3 dl wheat flour
2 tbs of water
150 g Västerbottensost (shredded)
2 dl cream
Salt and pepper
Let the butter warm a little bit in room temperature, but don’t melt it. Mix the flour with the butter, a mixer is helpful in this. Add the water. Spread the mixture into a pie dish. Put the dish in a refrigerator for about 30 min. Heat the oven to 200℃ and put the pie bottom into the oven for 10 min.
Mix the eggs with the cream and add shredded cheese. Use salt, pepper and other spices, e.g. chili according to taste. Pour the filling into the dish and put back in the oven for about 30 min. or until solid and browned.
You can serve the pie with salad or any other dish you like, or just enjoy it as such. Västerbottenpaj is probably not the healthiest dish, since it’s high in salt and fat, but it’s delicious!