OLOMOUC STYLE FRIED CHEESE with LEPENICE

Czech name: Smažené tvarůžky s lepenicí

Written by Sam Graham Hinton

Olomouc aromatic cheese (Olomoucke tvaruzky) is well-known as a strong-smell and flavorful delicacy. Cheese specialists claim that genuine gourmands can enjoy it only in combination with lager beer. The locals like to say that only in Hana (an area in Olomouc Region) can you recognize the true taste of aromatic cheese. Such cheese has been produced and matured in the Lostice cheese factory for more than 600 years. They often offer you fried curd cheese with mashed potatoes and cabbage in Hana. With this recipe you will learn not only how to prepare a cheese dish beloved in Olomouc Region, you will also be able to try making Lepenice.

For more information about the Olomouc region, from which this recipe comes, click here.

Ingredients

Cheese
8 slices Olomouc aromatic cheese (or Limburger)
8 thin slices hard salami
1 egg
2 Tbs milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup plain breadcrumbs
Oil for frying

Lepenice
2 1/2 cups potatoes
3 Tbs milk
2 1/2 cups sauerkraut
1 medium onion
1 Tbs lard
salt and ground black pepper to taste

Instructions

Lepenice
Cook the peeled potatoes in salted water until they are soft. Then pour the water out and mash them in hot milk. Dice up a peeled onion and fry it with lard, and then mix in chopped sauerkraut and cook it. Next it is time to mix the sauerkraut with the mashed potatoes, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Fried Cheese
Place a thin slice of hard salami between two 1-inch thick slices of aromatic cheese.  Olomouc cheese, available only in Europe, is sold in pre-sliced round pieces, but Limburger, which may be substituted in the United States, is sold in blocks that must be cut.

Put a toothpick through the middle to hold it together. Then cover it with flour, put it in a mixture of egg and milk, and finally cover it with breadcrumbs. Recoat it with the egg wash and breadcrumbs so that it will be double-breaded;  this helps prevent cheese from leaking during frying. After you have done this to all the pieces of aromatic cheese, fry the pieces on high heat until golden brown.

Remove the toothpicks. Then serve immediately after frying with warm Lepenice as a side dish. Enjoy!