The Swedish Västerbotten cheese pie (Västerbottenpaj) is the most famous and traditional Swedish savoury pie. It is almost as mandatory to eat as the crayfish at the Swedish crayfish party (kräftskiva) in August but can be eaten all year around.
The recipe ingredients and proportions are so easy that you can remember it without the recipe! The recipe below is the traditional simple yet delicious version but you can also add ingredients like onion, bacon and chanterelles (or any other mushroom).
The direct translation of Västerbotten cheese pie to Swedish is “Västerbottensostpaj”, but even Swedes think that sounds too complicated so it is more known as “Västerbottenpaj”.
Västerbottenpaj - Swedish cheese pie
- 180 g wheat flour
- ½ tsp salt
- 125 g butter preferably a bit warmer than fridge cold
- 1 tbsp water
- 400 g Västerbotten cheese
- 4 eggs
- 400 ml milk
- black pepper
- Mix flour with salt and butter. If using hands it will be small lumps. You can also use a food processor. Then add the water and mix to an even dough.
- Let the dough rest in the fridge for around 30 min. During this time you can grate the cheese and prepare the rest.
- Heat up the oven to 200°C (400°F)
- Press out the dough to a round pizza shape, it is easiest with a rolling pin. Add it to a pie form of about 27-28 cm (11 inches) in diameter. Make sure to push up the pie dough far up on the sides. Use a fork to punch small holes in the dough. You might also consider covering the sides with aluminium oven foil (it will avoid getting the sides overcooked later on)
- Cook the pie dough for 12 minutes and then bring it out of the oven.
- Grate the cheese and put aside
- Whisk the eggs with milk and season with freshly grated black pepper
- Add the cheese in the bottom of the pie
- Pour over the egg and milk mixture and bake in oven for around 30 minutes (top should be brown but not burnt). Let it stand to rest for around 10 min
- Serve hot or cold with a salad or if used at the typical Swedish "Kräftskiva" then of course you have crayfish to it.