Balmoș – Transylvanian Cheese Polenta

As promised last week, a sneak peek into our upcoming post on Romanian cheese-making.

Balmoș out of the oven

We show below how to make balmoș, a variation of a traditional Romanian dish: mămăligă (polenta), but with loads of extra cheese and milky stuff in it. There are many recipes for making balmoș, but ours is a simple one anyone can make at home.

Balmoș (Transylvanian cheese polenta)

Ingredients

  • 500ml whey
  • 200ml water
  • 200g corn flour
  • 50g butter
  • 200g caș or branză de burduf (can use any hard and strongly flavoured cheese instead)
  • 1 pinch salt

Directions

Step 1
Bring the whey and water to a boil and then slowly add in the corn flour, mixing constantly with a whisk (beware: flying bits of boiling polenta are painful, so you might want to reduce the heat before that happens).
Step 2
Add the butter, salt to taste, and keep whisking for about 5-7 minutes or until the mixture turns into a nice homogenous and creamy paste. It is now ready to eat!
Step 3
Our tip: put the balmoș in an oven-friendly plate, interlaced with layers of caș or brânză de burduf, add some sour cream and let it rest in the oven for about 15 minutes. The result is an amazing crispy crust, so delicious that you will lick the plates clean!
Step 4
Our tip: put the balmoș in an oven-friendly plate, interlaced with layers of caș or brânză de burduf, add some sour cream and let it rest in the oven for about 15 minutes. The result is an amazing crispy crust, so delicious that you will lick the plates clean!

Making cream cheese

If you cannot find fresh whey, it is super easy to make at home. Pour 1kg of yoghurt in a thin gauze and let it sit overnight, and the liquid dripping is whey.

Whey and Fresh cheese

Whey (left) and fresh cheese

Do not throw out the rest of the yoghurt, which has turned into a smooth cream cheese! Season it with your preferred spices and herbs and you’ll get a perfect appetizer. For example, cover it with thyme, sesame seeds, salt, pepper, and olive oil and you get this:

Fresh cheese dip

And if you are really *really* lazy, then simply user 300g of milk and 300g of yogurt, instead of whey and water.

Making Balmoș

Mix thoroughly (step 1 & 2)

Making Balmoș

Add layers of Burduf cheese (step 4)

Comments

comments

You may also like

One comment

Join the conversation