Parmesan is classified as a grana-type cheese: a hard, grainy cheese made from cow’s milk. It has a rich, sharp flavor an d a melt in your mouth texture. Typically sprinkled on top of pasta dishes or to add a rich, salty flavor to sauces , soups, and stews.
Parmesan is produced with techniques inspired by Parmigiano-Reggiano but Parmesan can’t call itself Parmigiano-Reggiano because it is not from the designated Emilia-Romagna region of Italy and may not follow the Consorzio Del Formaggio Parmigiano-Reggiano’s production requirements.
Parmigiano-Reggiano is made with only three ingredients: raw milk, salt, and calf’s rennet. The cheese must follow dimension, weight, color, and fat content standards. Even the feed that cows eat must come from the “defined geographic area.”
All About Parmesan Cheese – Buying Parmesan Cheese
Authentic Italian Parmigiano-Reggiano has a complex flavor and smooth, melting texture. Most of the other Parmesan-type cheeses are too salty and one-dimensional. When
selecting Parmesan cheese, make sure some portion of the words “Parmigiana~ Reggiano” are stenciled on the golden rind.
To ensure that you are buying a properly aged cheese, examine the condition of the rind. It should be a few shades darker than the straw-colored interior and penetrate about 1/2 inch deep (younger or improperly aged cheeses will have a paler, thinner rind). And closely scrutinize the center of the cheese. Those small white spots found on many samples are actually good things-they signify the presence of calcium phosphate crystals, which are formed only after the cheese has been aged for the proper amount of time.
All About Parmesan Cheese – Storing Parmesan Cheese
The best way to preserve the flavor and texture of Parmesan cheese is to wrap it in parchment paper, then aluminum foil. However, if you have just a small piece of cheese, tossing it in a zip-lock bag works almost as well- just be sure to squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing the bag.
PARMESAN VS. PECORINO ROMANO
While Parmesan is a cow’s milk cheese, Pecorino Romano is made from sheep’s milk, but the two do have a similar texture and flavor and often you ‘ll see one as an alternative to the other in recipes. We have found that Parmesan and Pecorino Romano generally can be used interchangeably, especially when the amount called for is moderate. However, when Parmesan is called fo, in large, quantities, it is best to stick with theParmesan, as Pecorino Romano can be fairly pungent.
All About Parmesan Cheese – Pre-grating
Powdered Parmesan cheese in a can or the pre-grated Parmesan cheese in the refrigerated section is typically uneven in quality.
The flavor and quality of freshly grated Parmesan is superior to pre-grated, packaged cheese. Grating your own cheese is not as quick and easy as using pre-grated cheese, but the flavor results are well-worth the extra preparation time. Using a grater, as opposed to thinly shaving the brick of cheese, or cutting it into chunks, makes the parmesan perfect for a pasta topping or to use in recipes requiring freshly grated cheese.
Rotary Cheese Grater – Stainless Steel
Rotary Cheese Grater – LOVKITCHEN Vegetable Stainless Steel Cheese Grater Shredder Cutter Grinder with 3 Drum Blades (Silver)
Made of 430 stainless steel, very sturdy, the quality beat other competitors.
Lift the main head and insert the food into the chamber and turn the handle to effortlessly grate, zest or shave within seconds
Rotary Mechanism for smooth & effortless grating making it suitable for right & left hand use.
The rotary grater is made with the highest grade of durable stainless steel and can be easily cleaned in the dishwasher without fear of being damaged.
Wash it in hot water after rotating the cheese, cheese will melt in hot water, then wash it with a brush, that will be quite effective