Produced in factories throughout Norway and the U.S. this cheese is a traditional cremery cheese made from partially skimmed cow's milk. Similar in appearance and flavor to a Dutch Leiden cheese, the Nokkelost Cheese is slightly milder and softer in texture. It is also typically seasoned with caraway, cumin and cloves which adds a distinctive flavor to its characteristics as a mild cheese. Also referred to as Kuminost Cheese, the Nokkelost is formed into wheels or blocks and then allowed to mature for two to three months to be sold as a semi-hard textured cheese. A thin natural rind develops and when ready to market the cheese, it is generally covered with a bright red paraffin. This cheese is a good cheese for snacking, for use as an appetizer or for serving as a toppping melted over potatoes and meats.
The term nokkel in Norwegian translates into crossed keys which is part of the symbol used by the Dutch city of Leiden to denote products produced within and adjacent to their city. Thus, the packaging and name of this cheese may display a crossed-keys emblem to symbolize the association with the Leiden heritage that goes back to the seventeenth century.
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