Serenaded by poets, cherished by all who try it, Pecorino Romano is a staple in Italian cuisine. On the natural plains of Lazio, specifically bred sheep are fed fresh forage, producing a full and aromatic milk that almost exclusively makes up the ingredients of this cheese.
Originating in the capital of Italy, Pecorino Romano delivers pungent tones of soft spices and seared butter. Bursting with character, this cheese is hard and crumbly in texture, and presents ever-stronger flavours as seasons pass.
Rich in history and taste, Pecorino Romano lets its legacy stand testimony to the excellence and versatility of its character.
The craft of producing Pecorino Romano has principally remained untouched by modern methods, and production is still largely the same as originally practised.
The journey from local pasture to creamery is hurried, guaranteeing that the milk is fresh when the natural bacteria and rennet needed to form the curd are added. Once developed, the curd is separated and placed into moulds, where it is brined by hand. After a thorough rinse and another coating of salt, the cheese is ready for aging. Arranged on wooden shelves, the cheese sharpens and intensifies, creating the iconic flavour. After about 8 months, workers inspect the colour, taste and texture, ensuring that it has earned its title of Pecorino Romano.
The traditional methods of making Pecorino Romano uses no artificial fillers, additives or preservatives. Most versions are gluten free and unpasteurised, with only the addition of animal-rennet making it unsuitable for vegetarians. Be sure to check the label in any case.
A granular texture and a sharp, lingering aftertaste are popular qualities among hard Italian cheeses. As a result, similar cheeses are widespread.
Presenting the savoury tones of roasted nuts and caramelised butter, Parmesan, or Parmigiano Reggiano, draws many parallels to Pecorino Romano. Resembling it in texture and flavour, this cheese is both balanced and bold, and often referred to as the ruler of cheeses.
Lower in fat, milder in sharpness, the Grana Padano is a great choice if the piquant tones of the Pecorino Romano are too strong for your palate. This cheese has similar flavours, albeit on a smaller scale.
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