What is Skyr?
Our new Skyr Kit has launched and there have been some highly amusing attempts at pronunciation. From skier to skur (with a serious rolled r) and everything in between. This delicious, high protein and low-fat product is pronounced skeer and is the new favourite dairy treat on the block.
Skyr in Iceland is old news as it originated there nearly 1,000 years ago and has been a daily staple since. As with traditional yoghurt it was discovered by accident when the milk was left outside and naturally fermented with cultures from the environment. The rest of the world is slowly cottoning on to the glory of skyr and why it just might be the best thing since Greek yoghurt.
Technically skyr is a soft cheese however it’s eaten more like a yoghurt and can be enjoyed both sweet and savoury, at breakfast, lunch or dinner! Made with the same or very similar cultures as yoghurt (which allows it to sit in the yoghurt aisle) it also has the addition of vegetarian rennet which helps to give the firmer texture.
The real bonus with skyr is it’s made from skim milk, which means it has little to no fat unlike Greek yoghurt which requires full fat milk as a starting point. Same high level of protein and calcium (arguably higher as the milk is more concentrated) but significantly less fat, why haven’t we been eating this the whole time you ask?
In terms of taste and texture skyr is thicker than Greek yoghurt and has slightly less acidic tang. Traditionally if it was made well it would be so thick and creamy that it wouldn’t fall off an upside-down spoon! Without the acidic tang of Greek yoghurt, it can easily be made sweet or savoury depending on what you’re after.
Traditionally in Iceland it was served cold, topped with sugar and cream – tasty right? If you’re not quite on the cream and sugar buzz but want a good protein hit for breakfast, try mixing half skyr and half porridge to create hræringur (literally means stirred) and top with fresh berries and a drizzle of honey.
A few other alternative uses for our new favourite product
- Mix with jam for a sweet, afternoon pick up
- Add to smoothies to ensure you are getting enough nutrition for breakfast or morning tea.
- Stir into mashed potatoes for a thicker texture
- Spread on wholegrain toast and top with sliced banana, chopped nuts and a drizzle of honey.
- Use instead of sour cream in any recipe, it’s better for you as it’s low fat but the same thick, creamy texture.
Skyr in the supermarket has all the health benefits but watch out for flavoured options. As with yoghurt they tend to be packed full of sweeteners, flavours and stabilisers that we don’t really need. The best way to get the most out of your skyr is to make it yourself, then you know exactly what is going into it and if it needs some sweetener, fresh fruit, jam or honey are perfect options.
Once you’ve made your first jar of skyr and have figured out the re-culture process (it’s super easy, instructions in the Mad Millie Skyr Kit) why not give the below a whirl? Just ensure you make it when you’re entertaining or have good self-control as it will be devoured before you even know what has happened!
Icelandic Blueberry Skyr Cake
- 1/2 packet of biscuits (cinnamon or digestive biscuits are best)
- 50g butter
- 400g Mad Millie Skyr
- 500mL whipping cream
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla essence/extract
- Crush the biscuits until a fine crumble, melt the butter and combine together.
- Put the base mixture into a round 24 cm cake tin and smooth down.
- Whip the cream.
- Gently mix the skyr and vanilla essence into the cream.
- Pour this filling mixture onto the biscuit crust.
- Refrigerate the base and filling for at least 2 hours before serving.
- Combine the sugar, cornstarch and water in a small saucepan over medium heat and stir to combine.
- Add the blueberries and lemon juice, cook over a medium heat stirring consistently until the blueberries start to soften and let out juice and the mixture thickens.
- Remove from the heat and add the vanilla. Pour into another bowl and refrigerate until cool.
Drizzle over the Skyr Cheesecake to serve once cool.