Finland the Republic of Finland, is a country in Northern Europe bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, Gulf of Finland, between Norway to the north, Sweden to the northwest, Russia to the east. Finland is situated in the geographical region of Fennoscandia; the capital and largest city is Helsinki. Other major cities are Espoo, Tampere and Turku. Finland's population is 5.52 million, the majority of the population is concentrated in the southern region. 88.7% of the population is Finnish and speaks Finnish, a Uralic language unrelated to the Scandinavian languages. Finland is the eighth-largest country in Europe and the most sparsely populated country in the European Union; the sovereign state is a parliamentary republic with a central government based in the capital city of Helsinki, local governments in 311 municipalities, one autonomous region, the Åland Islands. Over 1.4 million people live in the Greater Helsinki metropolitan area, which produces one third of the country's GDP. Finland was inhabited when the last ice age ended 9000 BCE.
The first settlers left behind artefacts that present characteristics shared with those found in Estonia and Norway. The earliest people were hunter-gatherers; the first pottery appeared in 5200 BCE. The arrival of the Corded Ware culture in southern coastal Finland between 3000 and 2500 BCE may have coincided with the start of agriculture; the Bronze Age and Iron Age were characterised by extensive contacts with other cultures in the Fennoscandian and Baltic regions and the sedentary farming inhabitation increased towards the end of Iron Age. At the time Finland had three main cultural areas – Southwest Finland and Karelia – as reflected in contemporary jewellery. From the late 13th century, Finland became an integral part of Sweden through the Northern Crusades and the Swedish part-colonisation of coastal Finland, a legacy reflected in the prevalence of the Swedish language and its official status. In 1809, Finland was incorporated into the Russian Empire as the autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland.
In 1906, Finland became the first European state to grant all adult citizens the right to vote, the first in the world to give all adult citizens the right to run for public office. Following the 1917 Russian Revolution, Finland declared itself independent. In 1918, the fledgling state was divided by civil war, with the Bolshevik-leaning Red Guard supported by the new Soviet Russia, fighting the White Guard, supported by the German Empire. After a brief attempt to establish a kingdom, the country became a republic. During World War II, the Soviet Union sought to occupy Finland, with Finland losing parts of Karelia, Kuusamo and some islands, but retaining their independence. Finland established an official policy of neutrality; the Finno-Soviet Treaty of 1948 gave the Soviet Union some leverage in Finnish domestic politics during the Cold War era. Finland joined the OECD in 1969, the NATO Partnership for Peace in 1994, the European Union in 1995, the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council in 1997, the Eurozone at its inception, in 1999.
Finland was a relative latecomer to industrialisation, remaining a agrarian country until the 1950s. After World War II, the Soviet Union demanded war reparations from Finland not only in money but in material, such as ships and machinery; this forced Finland to industrialise. It developed an advanced economy while building an extensive welfare state based on the Nordic model, resulting in widespread prosperity and one of the highest per capita incomes in the world. Finland is a top performer in numerous metrics of national performance, including education, economic competitiveness, civil liberties, quality of life, human development. In 2015, Finland was ranked first in the World Human Capital and the Press Freedom Index and as the most stable country in the world during 2011–2016 in the Fragile States Index, second in the Global Gender Gap Report, it ranked first on the World Happiness Report report for 2018 and 2019. A large majority of Finns are members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, freedom of religion is guaranteed under the Finnish Constitution.
The earliest written appearance of the name Finland is thought to be on three runestones. Two have the inscription finlonti; the third was found in Gotland. It dates back to the 13th century; the name can be assumed to be related to the tribe name Finns, mentioned at first known time AD 98. The name Suomi has uncertain origins, but a candidate for a source is the Proto-Baltic word *źemē, meaning "land". In addition to the close relatives of Finnish, this name is used in the Baltic languages Latvian and Lithuanian. Alternatively, the Indo-European word * gʰm-on "man" has been suggested; the word referred only to the province of Finland Proper, to the northern coast of Gulf of Finland, with northern regions such as Ostrobothnia still sometimes being excluded until later. Earlier theories suggested derivation from suomaa or suoniemi, but these are now considered outdated; some have suggested common etymology with saame and Häme, but that theory is uncertain
The Belper Knolle is a Swiss cheese made in the city of Belp, Switzerland. Made from unpasteurized cow's milk, it can be found in two variants, red or gold depending on its degree of maturation, fresh or dry. A fresh Belper Knolle can be heated to 60 °C and softened in a sort of square-shaped stone before consumption
Berner Alpkäse is a hard cheese produced in the Alps of the Bernese Oberland and adjacent areas of Switzerland. It is a full-fat, raw milk cheese without holes; the cheese is manufactured with manual labour on a wood fire. An extra-hard variety of Berner Alpkäse, known as Berner Hobelkäse, is aged for at least two years and it is this variety, most available. Both Berner Alpkäse and Berner Hobelkäse are AOCs in Switzerland; the cheese is made from recognized Alpine farms during the Alpine season. Only milk from cows fed on pastures which have not been fertilised artificially may be used; the milk is flavoured from the Alpine herbs and is much richer in polyunsaturated fatty-acids than milk from the lowland regions. The cheese must be made no than 18 hours after milking; as a rule, the chilled evening milk is skimmed to produce a fat content of at least 45% in the final product. This is mixed with the morning milk; the milk is heated to 33 °C and cultured bacteria from the region are added along with the rennet.
After 30 minutes, the curds are cut with a cheese-harp into pinhead-sized grains. The curds and whey are heated to 50 °C which shrinks the curds and kills any unwanted bacteria; the curds are packed into a cheese-mould and pressed for 15 hours, after which time the cheese-loaf is soaked in brine for 24 hours. The cheeses, in rounds of at least 15 kg, are aged at a humidity of over 85% and the rind is brushed with brine; the initial ripening period occurs on-site and the cheese is aged in the cellars of cheesemongers and dairies. After a maturation period of 6 to 18 months, the cheese is ready for consumption; the second ripening, of at least one year, occurs at a much lower humidity and the rind is no longer washed. The annual production is about 1000 tonnes of cheese, a third of, further processed into Hobelkäse. About 75% of production is marketed directly by the producers, the remainder in the general trade. Alpkäse is consumed as sliced cheese. Hobelkäse is too brittle to be cut with a knife and so it is planed into thin rolls or crumbled into small pieces.
Berner Alpkäse is similar to Sbrinz but the latter is produced in the lowlands and is much saltier, undergoing a longer brining period of 15 to 20 days. Brined cheese – Cheese, matured in a solution of brine Culinary Heritage of Switzerland List of cheeses – A list of cheeses by place of origin casalp.ch Sortenorganisation für Berner Alp- und Hobelkäse Pflichtenheft für Berner Alpkäse und Hobelkäse Agroscope: Berner Alpkäse AOC und Berner Hobelkäse AOC Traditionelle Herstellung von Berner Alpkäse in Bildern
Rolf Beeler is a Swiss affineur known for his raw milk artisan cheeses, which he has developed for more than 30 years. He does not make cheese himself but collects terroir-based cheeses from small, artisanal and ages them to create the final product. Rolf Beeler is regarded as Switzerland’s best maître fromager and dubbed "The Pope of Cheese" by swiss newspapers. Prior to becoming a cheese specialist, Rolf Beeler tried school teaching and DJing, but his passion for good food prevailed, he opened his own grocery store, where he sold only the products he liked. He discovered that he wanted to work with cheeses. Beeler sold his store and started to work directly with cheese makers in Switzerland and abroad, including world-renowned French cheesemaker Bernard Antony. Beeler turned his house basement into small cheese cellar and started to age and ripen his favourite cheeses, which he bought from small local producers. Restaurateurs liked his cheeses, the business went up and soon there was not enough space to stock all the wheels of cheese at his house.
He came up with a new strategy. He now allows the cheese to ripen at the cheese makers' cellars and educates them on how to handle the process of ripening, he visits his cheese makers at least once a week to check the product and discuss the further steps of aging. After succeeding in production of traditional Swiss cheeses, Rolf started to develop new cheese recipes in collaboration with his fellow cheesemakers. Wine-washed Hoch Ybrig was the first one and many followed. All of Beeler's new cheeses are welcomed by cheese lovers and professionals alike. By the end of the nineties, Rolf Beeler decided to expand to foreign markets and introduced his Sélection Rolf Beeler at the Slow Food Fair Salone del Gusto in Turin, Italy in 1998. Today his Selection contains eighteen aged raw milk cheeses and can be found on the menu of more than 120 top restaurants in Germany, Switzerland, Scandinavia, USA and Australia. Toggenburger Sélection Rolf Beeler won gold medal at World Cheese Award 2009 held in Gran Canaria Jersey Blue by Willi Schmid won gold medal at 2010 World Jersey Cheese Awards Max McCalman rated 186 cheese in his book “Cheese: A Connoisseur's Guide to the World's Best”, 17 of the top 30 are from Rolf Beeler with the top spot going to Beeler’s Sbrinz Max McCalman, 2005.
Cheese: A Connoisseur's Guide to the World's Best, 304 pages, ISBN 978-1400050345 Flammer, Dominik. "Swiss cheese: origins, traditional cheese varieties and new creations", 343 pages, ISBN 978-3033026162 Rolf Beeler's website
Gruyère is a hard yellow cheese that originated in the cantons of Fribourg, Neuchâtel and Berne in Switzerland. It is named after the town of Gruyères. Before 2001, when Gruyère gained the appellation d'origine contrôlée status as a Swiss cheese, some controversy existed whether French cheeses of a similar nature could be labelled Gruyère. Gruyère is sweet but salty, with a flavor that varies with age, it is described as creamy and nutty when young, becoming more assertive and complex as it matures. When aged it tends to have small cracks that impart a grainy texture. Gruyère cheese is known as one of the finest cheeses for baking, having a distinctive but not overpowering taste. In quiche, Gruyère adds savoriness without overshadowing the other ingredients, it is a good melting cheese suited for fondues, along with Vacherin Fribourgeois and Emmental. It is traditionally used in French onion soup, as well as in croque-monsieur, a classic French toasted ham and cheese sandwich. Gruyère is used in chicken and veal cordon bleu.
It is a fine table cheese, when grated, it is used with salads and pastas. It is used, atop le tourin, a type of garlic soup from France, served on dried bread. White wines, such as Riesling, pair well with Gruyère. Sparkling cider and Bock beer are beverage affinities. To make Gruyère, raw milk is heated to 34 °C in a copper vat, curdled by the addition of liquid rennet; the curd stirred, releasing whey. The curd is cooked at 43 °C, raised to 54 °C; the whey is strained, the curds placed into molds to be pressed. After salting in brine and smearing with bacteria, the cheese is ripened for two months at room temperature on wooden boards, turning every couple of days to ensure moisture distribution. Gruyère can be cured with long curing producing a cheese of intense flavor. In 2001, Gruyère gained the Appellation d'origine contrôlée status. Since the production and the maturation is defined in the Swiss law, all Swiss Gruyère producers must follow these rules. To be accepted throughout Europe as an AOC, the "Interprofession du Gruyère" in Switzerland plans to make a transnational AOC with the French producers of Gruyère.
Gruyère-style cheeses are popular in Greece, where the local varieties are known as γραβιέρα. Some Greek gruyères come from San Michálē from the island of Syros in the Cyclades, the Naxian varieties, that tend to be milder and more sweet and various graviéras from Crete. Gruyère-style cheeses are produced in the United States, Wisconsin with the name of Grand Cru, having the largest output. An important and the longest part of the production of the Le Gruyere Switzerland AOC is the affinage. According to the AOC, the cellars to mature a Swiss Gruyère must have a climate close to that of a natural cave; this means that the humidity should be between 94% and 98%. If the humidity is lower, the cheese dries out. If the humidity is too high, the cheese becomes smeary and gluey; the temperature of the caves should be between 13 °C and 14 °C. This high temperature is required for excellent quality cheese. Lower quality cheeses result from temperatures between 10 °C and 12 °C; the lower the temperature is, the less the cheese matures, resulting in a texture, harder and more crumbly.
Le Gruyère Switzerland AOC has many different varieties, with different aged profiles, an organic version of the cheese is sold. There is a special variety, produced only in summer on the Swiss Alps: the Le Gruyère Switzerland AOC Alpage. One can distinguish the age profiles of mild/doux and réserve known as surchoix. In Switzerland, other age profiles can be found, including mi-salé, salé, Höhlengereift, but these age profiles are not part of the AOC; the French Le Brouère cheese, made in nearby Vosges, is considered a variant of Gruyère. Le Gruyère Premier Cru is a special variety and matured in the canton of Fribourg and matured for 14 months in humid caves with a humidity of 95% and a temperature of 13.5 °C. It is the only cheese that has won the title of best cheese of the world at the World Cheese Awards four times: in 1992, 2002, 2005 and 2015. Brined cheese – Cheese, matured in a solution of brine Culinary Heritage of Switzerland – an online encyclopedia List of cheeses – A list of cheeses by place of origin Gruyère cheese in the online Culinary Heritage of Switzerland database.
An article on the history and controversy of Swiss versus French claims to Gruyère cheese
Fondue is a Swiss melted cheese served in a communal pot over a portable stove heated with a candle or spirit lamp, eaten by dipping bread into the cheese using long-stemmed forks. It was promoted as a Swiss national dish by the Swiss Cheese Union in the 1930s, was popularized in North America in the 1960s. Since the 1950s, the term "fondue" has been generalized to other dishes in which a food is dipped into a communal pot of liquid kept hot in a fondue pot: chocolate fondue, in which pieces of fruit or pastry are dipped into a melted chocolate mixture, fondue bourguignonne, in which pieces of meat are cooked in hot oil or broth; the word fondue is the feminine passive past participle of the French verb fondre used as a noun. It is first attested in French in 1735, in Vincent la Chapelle's Cuisinier moderne, in English in 1878; the earliest known recipe for cheese fondue as we know it today comes from a 1699 book published in Zurich, under the name "Käss mit Wein zu kochen", "to cook cheese with wine".
It calls for grated or cut-up cheese to be melted with wine, for bread to be dipped in it. However, the name "cheese fondue", until the late nineteenth century, referred to a preparation including eggs and cheese, as in la Chapelle's 1735 Fonduë de Fromage, aux Truffes Fraiches it was something between scrambled eggs with cheese and a cheese soufflé. Brillat-Savarin wrote in 1834 that it is "nothing other than scrambled eggs with cheese". Variations included cream and truffles in addition to eggs, as well as what is now called "raclette"; the first known recipe for the modern cheese fondue under that name, with cheese and wine but no eggs, was published in 1875, was presented as a Swiss national dish. Despite its modern associations with rustic mountain life, it was a town-dweller's dish from the lowlands of western, French-speaking, Switzerland: rich cheese like Gruyère was a valuable export item which peasants could not afford to eat; the introduction of cornstarch to Switzerland in 1905 made it easier to make a smooth and stable emulsion of the wine and cheese, contributed to the success of fondue.
Fondue was popularized as a Swiss national dish by the Swiss Cheese Union in the 1930s as a way of increasing cheese consumption. The Swiss Cheese Union created pseudo-regional recipes as part of the "spiritual defence of Switzerland". After World War II rationing ended, the Swiss Cheese Union continued its marketing campaign, sending fondue sets to military regiments and event organizers across Switzerland. Fondue is now a symbol of Swiss unity. In the meantime, fondue continued to be promoted aggressively in Switzerland, with slogans like "La fondue crée la bonne humeur"'fondue creates a good mood' and "Fondue isch guet und git e gueti Luune"'fondue is good and creates a good mood' – abbreviated as "figugegl". Fondue was promoted to Americans at the Swiss Pavilion's Alpine restaurant at the 1964 New York World's Fair; the extension of the name "fondue" to other dishes served in a communal hot pot dates to 1950s New York. Konrad Egli, a Swiss restaurateur, introduced fondue bourguignonne at his Chalet Suisse restaurant in 1956.
In the mid 1960s, he invented chocolate fondue as part of a promotion for Toblerone chocolate. A sort of chocolate mousse or chocolate cake had sometimes been called "chocolate fondue" starting in the 1930s. Cheese fondue consists of a blend of cheeses and seasoning. To prepare the caquelon it is first rubbed with a cut garlic clove. White wine is heated with cornstarch, grated cheese is added and stirred until melted, it is topped off with a bit of kirsch. The cornstarch or other starch is added to prevent separation; the mixture is stirred continuously. When it is ready, diners dip cubes of bread speared on a fondue fork into the mixture. A cheese fondue mixture should be kept warm enough to keep the fondue smooth and liquid but not so hot that it burns. If this temperature is held until the fondue is finished there will be a thin crust of toasted cheese at the bottom of the caquelon; this is called la religieuse. It has the texture of a cracker and is always lifted out and eaten. Vaudoise: Gruyère.
Fribourgeoise: Vacherin fribourgeois à fondue, wherein potatoes are dipped instead of bread. This is the only cheese fondue; the cheese is melted in a few tablespoons of water over low heat. Moitié-moitié called Fondue Suisse: Gruyère and Fribourg vacherin. Neuchâteloise: Gruyère and Emmental. Innerschweiz: Gruyère, Sbrinz. Genevoise: Gruyère with a little Emmentaler and Valais cheese. Sometimes chopped sautéed morels are added. Interlaken: Gruyère, Emmental. Appenzeller: Appenzeller cheese with cream added. Tomato: Gruyère, crushed tomatoes, wine. Spicy: Gruyère, red and green peppers, with chili. Mushroom: Gruyère, Fribourg vacherin, mushrooms. Savoyarde: Comté, Beaufort and one or two other local cheese like Reblochon, Abondance, or French equivalent of Gruyère. Jurassienne: Mature or mild Comté. Auvergnate: Saint-Nectaire and Fourme d'Ambert Valdôtaine: Fontina, milk and truffles, typical of the Aosta Valley. Refrigerated fondue blends are sold in most Swiss supermarkets as convenience food and need little more than melting in the caquelon.
Individual portions heatable in a microwave oven are sold. Fondue chinoise (lit. "Chinese fondue"
Swiss cheese is a generic name in North America for several related varieties of cheese of North American manufacture, which resemble Emmental cheese, a yellow, medium-hard cheese that originated in the area around Emmental, in Switzerland. Some types of Swiss cheese have a distinctive appearance, as the blocks of the cheese are riddled with holes known as "eyes"; the term is used for cheeses similar in style made outside Switzerland, such as Jarlsberg cheese, which originates in Norway, or Valio's Finlandia brand from Finland. Three types of bacteria are used in the production of Emmental cheese: Streptococcus salivarius subspecies thermophilus and Propionibacterium. In a late stage of cheese production, the propionibacteria consume the lactic acid excreted by the other bacteria and release acetate, propionic acid, carbon dioxide gas; the carbon dioxide forms the bubbles that develop the "eyes". The acetate and propionic acid give Swiss its sweet flavor. A hypothesis proposed by Swiss researchers in 2015 notes that particulate matter may play a role in the holes' development and that modern sanitation eliminated debris such as hay dust in the milk played a role in reduced hole size in Swiss cheeses, or "blind cheese".
The holes were seen as a sign of imperfection and cheese makers tried to avoid them by pressing during production. In modern times, the holes have become an identifier of the cheese. In general, the larger the eyes in a Swiss cheese, the more pronounced its flavor because a longer fermentation period gives the bacteria more time to act; this poses a problem, because cheese with large eyes does not slice well and comes apart in mechanical slicers. As a result, industry regulators have limited the eye size by which Swiss cheese receives the Grade A stamp. In 2014, 297.8 million pounds of Swiss cheese was produced in the United States. Baby Swiss and Lacy Swiss are two varieties of American Swiss cheeses. Both have a mild flavor. Baby Swiss is made from whole milk, Lacy Swiss is made from low fat milk. Baby Swiss was developed in the mid-1960s outside of Charm, Ohio, by the Guggisberg Cheese Company, owned by Alfred Guggisberg. Ch. = Choline. Source: Nutritiondata.self.com Swiss Cheese Niche microbewiki.kenyon.edu Making Swiss Cheese biology.clc.uc.edu