Are you a fan of feta cheese? If so, you’re not alone; this delicious, crumbly cheese has become increasingly popular in recent years.
Anyone who’s ever been to Greece or Bulgaria knows that feta cheese is a vital part of the cuisine in both countries.
Feta cheese is a delicious, tangy, and versatile cheese originating in Greece. It is made from sheep’s milk or a mixture of sheep and goat’s milk, and it is typically packed in brine (a salty water solution) to help preserve it.
While Feta is most associated with Greece, it is produced in several other countries, including Bulgaria. But did you know that not all feta cheese is created equal? In particular, there’s a big difference between Bulgarian Feta and Greek Feta.
Read on to learn more about the key differences between these two types of cheese.
Table of Contents
What is Greek Feta?
Feta is a Greek cheese that gets its name from the word “feta,” which means “slice” in Greek. Greek Feta is a cheese type often used in Mediterranean cuisine.
Greek Feta is made from sheep’s milk or goat’s milk and has a distinctively crumbly and tangy flavor. The milk is mixed with rennet, which helps the milk coagulate and form solid clumps. Once the substantial parts have been strained off, they are placed into molds, which will continue to firm up.
It is made in various ways, and it can be found both in its traditional form (marinated in olive oil) or in a more contemporary style (smoked or flavored with herbs).
Greek Feta is a versatile cheese that can be used in various dishes. It is often used in salads, sandwiches, and Greek dishes such as spanakopita and Baklava.
Greek Feta is protected by European Union law, which requires that it be made in specific regions of Greece using traditional methods. As a result, Greek Feta is one of the most authentic and flavorful types of feta cheese available.
What is Bulgarian Feta?
Bulgarian Feta is a white brined cheese made from sheep’s milk. Although it may be up to twelve months, it is usually aged for two to three months.
The flavor of Bulgarian Feta is salty and tangy, with a creamy texture. It is often used in salads, as well as in cooked dishes such as pies and pastries. Additionally, it is a well-liked cheese for grilling and barbecuing.
Bulgarian Feta is made in various shapes and sizes, but it is most commonly sold in blocks or wedges. It is an integral part of the Bulgarian diet and is also exported to many countries worldwide.
The main differences between Bulgarian Feta and Greek Feta
Ever wondered what the difference is between Greek Feta and Bulgarian Feta? Well, there are quite a few differences that set them apart.
1. The Texture
Regarding texture, there is a world of difference between Bulgarian Feta and Greek Feta.
Greek Feta is typically made with sheep’s milk, which gives it a creamier, slightly crunchy texture. On the other hand, Bulgarian Feta is usually a mixture of sheep’s and goat’s milk, making for a crumblier, less creamy cheese.
2. The Taste
The taste of feta cheese varies depending on where it is produced.
In general, Greek Feta has a sharper, more robust flavor than Bulgarian Feta; This is partly due to the fact that sheep’s milk has more fat than cow’s milk, which gives the cheese a richer flavor.
Greek Feta is also saltier due to the brine it is typically packed in. Bulgarian Feta, on the other hand, has a milder flavor that some people find to be more palatable.
3. The Age
Bulgarian Feta is typically aged for at least six months, while Greek Feta is generally aged for two to three months. This longer aging process gives Bulgarian Feta a sharper flavor and a crumblier texture.
4. The Uses
Feta cheese is a versatile ingredient used in both cooked and uncooked dishes. It has a mild, slightly salty flavor that pairs well with various other ingredients.
Feta cheese melts quickly and can be used as a cheesy topping on pizzas or salads. Additionally, it can be crushed and used as a filling for sweet or savory pastries or pies.
When eaten raw, feta cheese makes an excellent addition to salads or satisfying appetizer platters. Feta cheese will always bring a delightful touch to any dish, regardless of how it is prepared.
So, Bulgarian feta cheese is an excellent option if you’re looking for a rich, creamy flavor to add to your next salad or pasta dish. However, Greek Feta may be more up your alley if you prefer a firmer, crumblier cheese.
5. The Smell
As soon as we opened the containers, we could tell there was a significant difference in the smell of the two types of Feta.
The Bulgarian Feta had a milder, less salty smell, while the Greek feta had a stronger, more pungent odor.
6. The Price
Price is another factor that varies depending on where you buy your cheese. In general, Bulgarian Feta tends to be cheaper than Greek feta because Bulgaria has fewer restrictions on what can be considered “feta.”
As a result, more cheese makers in Bulgaria can produce and sell their products at lower prices.
So, if you’re looking for a cheaper option with a milder flavor, Bulgarian Feta is probably your best bet. But if you don’t mind spending a few extra dollars for a sharper taste, Greek Feta is the way to go.
7. The Availability
If you live in Europe, it’s easy to find Bulgarian and Greek Feta at your local grocery store or supermarket. However, living outside of Europe may have more difficulty finding authentic Bulgarian or Greek Feta.
Generally, Greek fetas are easier to find than Bulgarian ones; however, some specialty food stores sell both types of cheese.
Bulgarian Feta vs Greek Feta: Are they the same?
Both Bulgarian and Greek Feta are delicious cheeses with unique flavor profiles.
The main differences between these two types of cheese are texture and taste; Bulgarian Feta is creamier than Greek feta, and some people find that it has a slightly sweeter taste.
Regarding availability, Greek Feta is generally easier to find than Bulgarian Feta; however, both types of cheese can be found at specialty food stores.
It ultimately comes down to personal preference when deciding which type to buy. That being said, if you’re looking for a more decadent, flavorful cheese, you should go for Bulgarian Feta.
If you’re looking for something tangier and less expensive, go for Greek Feta.