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Czech Marinated Cheese

I was born in the Czech Republic and lived there for over 25 years. If you've ever been to Prague, you may have noticed that almost every pub offers a Czech speciality: "Pickled Cheese", at least that's how most of the locals translate what is known as Nakládaný Hermelín. Since "pickling" usually requires vinegar to be included, the correct term for this recipe should be "Marinated Cheese".

It may not sound appetising but I can assure you it's absolutely delicious! It's a type of camembert marinated in oil and stuffed with onion, garlic, herbs and spices. The marinating takes between 1 to 6 weeks, depending on how mature the cheese is. The more mature (softer) it is, the less it takes to marinate. I personally prefer using hard, mild cheese and marinate it for at least 2 weeks. Marinating deepens the flavour of the cheese and makes it soft.

How do we Czechs eat this cheese? Best with freshly baked bread and a glass of beer! Although there is no low-carb substitute for beer, you can use my Ultimate Keto Buns instead of bread and wouldn't even notice the difference. A serving of Marinated Cheese is enough for a full meal and ½ serving is great as a satisfying snack!

Preparation time


Nutritional values (per serving):

6.3 grams 1.5 grams 25.8 grams 57.5 grams 22.8 grams 645 calories
Total Carbs7.8grams
Net Carbs6.3grams
of which Saturated22.8grams
Magnesium34mg (8%)
Potassium386mg (19%)

Macronutrient ratio: Calories from carbs (3.9%), protein (16%), fat (80.1%)

Ingredients (makes 4 servings):

  • 2 large or 4 small packages Camembert (500 g / 17.6 oz) - you can also use Brie or goat cheese of "camembert type"
  • 1 large onion (150 g / 5.3 oz)
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup pickled chili peppers - I used green and bell chili peppers (120 g / 4.2 oz)
  • 1 tsp whole peppercorns
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp thyme, fresh or dried
  • salt to taste (I like pink Himalayan)
  • extra virgin olive oil - as much as you need to cover the cheese up, can be reused
  • Fido jar - you can get them on Amazon

Most of the oil is used only for marinating and is only included partially in the nutrition facts. Spices that are only used for infusing (peppercorns, bay leaves and thyme) are not included in the nutrition facts. Most of the oil is only used for marinating - I estimated 2 tablespoons of olive oil per serving.


  1. Clean and dry out the Fido jar. Cut all the pieces of Camembert widthwise.
  2. Peel and crush the garlic and slice the onion. Spread the garlic on top of all the insides of the cheese. Sprinkle with paprika, salt ...
  3. ... add onion slices and top with the other half of the cheese.
  4. Place the cheese in the Fido jar and add the bay leaves and whole peppercorns. Try to arrange the cheese as close as possible to avoid using too much olive oil to cover the cheese slices up. If needed, cut the cheese in half to fit it in the jar.
  5. Add the thyme and pickled chili peppers and any leftover onion.
  6. Top with the extra virgin olive oil until the cheese is covered. Shake the jar to get the air bubbles out. The chili peppers can be partially exposed but make sure the cheese is covered completely. You can reuse the oil for your next batch - just add more if needed. Close the Fido jar and keep it away from direct sunlight at room temperature for 1-6 weeks. Shake every 2-3 days to get the air out. The air will escape through the rubber lid while no oxygen will get in, thus there will be no risk of failure.
  7. The time depends on how mature the cheese is. If it's already soft, it may take as little as 5 days. If the cheese is mild, it will take approximately 2 weeks to marinate and soften. Once ripen and soft, store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Serve with the pickled chilis, onion rings and my Ultimate Keto Buns.

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Comments (9)

Ah! How I love nakladany hermelin! Any dietary regime that allows me to eat it is a winner. By the way, Martina, I have now lived exclusively on your recipes for several weeks - I take them to work for lunch and have them for dinner - and I feel great. I have no heath conditions other than that I was a bit overweight, but having kick-started this diet with a fast and then kept going with your recipes, I have lost nearly 10 kilos and reached my target weight. I'll keep going with this regime, simply because it's delicious and suits my tastes. I don't miss the carbs at all.
One question: do you have a recipe for pickled gherkins? I love them - the Czech in me won't be denied - but there will be a fair bit of sugar in the commercially available pickling liquid I imagine.


Thank you so much, you just made my day - you are doing great!! I love Czech food so I will definitely be posting more recipes. I don't have any for gherkins but it's on my to-do list. I usually get them from my local store - I think they are Polish and are one of the only gherkins that don't have additives... and sugar. I'll put the recipe on my list now Smile


Thank you, Martina! I made the nakladany hermelin yesterday before work and it is already pretty gooey as the camembert was probably a bit on the mature side and the Japanese summer is very hot, so "room temperature' is not what it usually means. It is delicious, I just had some. Moved it into the wine fridge at 14 degrees, which should slow the process down.
I also made the sauerkraut, so looking forward to the result in a few weeks' time. Thanks again for the recipes - no doubt I will get through every single one by the end of the year.
You are lucky you found gherkins with no sugar or other additives. We have a good selection here - many German brands, one Polish one, lots from France, Britain and Sweden, etc., but so far no luck on the no sugar front.
I have never been particularly fascistic about these things - a bit of sugar won't kill you - but this dietary regime has been going so well and I am so full of energy (a completely unintended side effect has been that I just stopped drinking coffee because I just don't need the caffeine) that I am thinking, why not try to just do it properly for now?
Anyway, thanks again, and if you do find a gherkin recipe that works, that would be amazing. Lukas


Thank you Lukas, I'll do my best but I don't think I'll be able to get to it any time soon, maybe in a month or so Smile I think it must be too hot for the camembert or you can slow the process down by using camembert that is not mature ind is "hard". Yes, sugar seems to be almost everywhere. I think that a very small amount is ok because in the end what counts is carbs per serving and the effect is always the same no matter where you get the sugar from (strictly speaking considering only the effect of sugar in food, not micronutrients). I would be more concerned about unnecessary additives and preservatives so if I find a product with a small amount of sugar and one with artificial sweeteners, I go for the one with sugar.


I wonder if Halloumi would's the only cheese I can eat nowadays without suffering allergy consequences.


I'll have to give it a try but I suspect it may work too. When I do, I'll post an update!


I literally only just pickled mine on Tuesday night!!! Now I’m awaiting the results. When I first made it in England (few years back) it went all mushy and started to fall into bits as I probably used way too ripe camembert. Someone then advise me to use “the freshest” I can get – as by the time it makes to our little North town it’s already ripen enough!
Also I keep mine in the fridge in a "jam" jar. Or is that no good?
So keep ma fingers crossed for this’un as really miss this delicacy! When visiting my family back home I NEVER give it a miss. Even go for the fresh sourdough rye bread – it’s only twice a year! 


Hi Irena, yes, a regular jam jar should work too. I just like using fido jars because the air escapes easily through the rubber when marinating. Yes, hard / unripen camembert is better but not always easy to find. Once I bought a really soft / mature one and it was gooey in just about 3 days - not enough time to marinate and too soft. Oh I love sourdough too - made a low-carb version (recipe is in the apps) and here is another, "rye" bread you may want to try:


Ooooh gonna have to try that! Hey - only just made masel sum ghee for the very first time! Can't wait for it to set and try it! Smile


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