Milk and milk products - Serbia

Vurda, also called ceđeno mleko, is a cheese made from sheep's milk, cow's milk or a mixture of the two. It takes three liters of milk to produce 1 kg of fresh vurda. Curdled milk is placed in a series of gauze squares that are tied to each other and hung to drain for about 24 hours. The draining time varies slightly from producer to producer. Salt to taste is mixed into the vurda, which is then ready to be either consumed or stored for further aging. The cheese can continue to age when kept in a cool storage area for three to four weeks. Young vurda is often placed in pots in alternating layers with peppers to make turshija. This resulting, creamy, fermented product resembles ricotta, with a slightly sour taste. Vurda can also be eaten as an appetizer or added to salads, omelets, used in main courses or in savory pies. Vurda is a product that originates from the areas of Luznica and Pirot in southeastern Serbia, and has been documented for at least a century as being used mixed with fresh peppers to create a dish that Serbian workers often would bring with them when moving abroad for work. Although vurda can be found for purchase today, it is made in small quantities, often in households. With the introduction of new food safety regulations, it is difficult for producers to meet the requirements needed to sell the product at the commercial level.