There is probably no Pole who hasn’t tasted this highlander delicacy at least once in their life. Steeped in the aroma and taste of mountain pastures, the smoke from a shepherd's hut smokehouse, it can be eaten both cold and fried with the addition of lingonberry jam. In 2007, oscypek was entered on the list of protected products of the European Union (as the second Polish regional product, after bryndza podhalańska). Since then, every shepherd who produces oscypek must have an EU certificate and produce it according to strictly defined rules. It is made from sheep's milk, the regulations allow the addition of cow milk obtained from Polska czerwona breed, but not more than 40 percent. Oscypek is a seasonal cheese. The production period is from May to September and sales last until November. So, if in December we come across a stand with "oscypek" in Zakopane on Krupówki Street, there is a high probability that it is not original certified oscypek cheese, but highlander cheese. The original oscypek cheese has a spindle shape, it is from 17 to 23 centimetres long, and weighs 60 - 80 dag. The outside of the oscypek cheese should be straw-coloured, and the inside is slightly creamy when cut.
Hard, smoked cheese from Podhale is the culinary show-piece of the region. Made from sheep's milk following the recipe from 1748.