Cheese of the Day: April 18: Pecorino Family of Cheeses – Marcella The Cheesemonger International Guilde des Fromagers
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Cheese of the Day: April 18: Pecorino Family of Cheeses

It’s Tuesday and it’s Italian-style Cheeses Presented by ACS CCP® Allin Tallmadge (I’m posting for him as a courtesy):
 
“Pecorino?”, He said sheepishly. “Ewe bet”.
Most of you know that Pecorino is the Italian name for cheese made from ewe’s milk. The most recognizable Pecorino in the US is Pecorino Romano; firm, savory, grate-able. The reason for this is probably due to the importation of cheese by Italian immigrant families. Large cylinders of salty cheese stood up well in crates loaded to freighters crossing the Atlantic. They were in great demand in Italian American kitchens by immigrants from central Italy; a great addition to pasta and red sauce dishes that came to dominate Italian immigrant cooking.
 
There are six main varieties of Pecorinos. All have PDO status. Besides P. Romano there are: P. Sardo from Sardinia, P. Tuscano for Tuscany, P. Siciliano from Sicily, P. di Filiano from Basilicata, and P. Crotonese. Largely produced in the same manner they reflect the tastes and culinary practices of the region in which they are made. All are good to know for the exam.
 
Predominate dairy breeds are Massese (indigenous to Tuscany) and Comisana (from Southern Italy) and Sarda form Sardinia. Sheep were the primary livestock in Italy up until the 19th Century.
 
The word Pecorino comes from the Italian for sheep ‘Pecora’ which comes from ‘Pecus’, which is Latin for livestock. The Etruscans are credited with creating any early sheep cheese. It was called Marzolino. It used rennet to coagulate the milk differing from the acid coagulation of other Mediterranean sheep cheeses like Feta. The Roman began using forms to hold the curds and make the shape the wheels take today.
 
Most Pecorino DOP allow either raw milk or heat treated.
The milk is full fat.
Most are pressed to remove whey.
All develop natural rinds that are dry salted.
Some are rubbed to remove moulds.
Some are coated to prevent excessive drying or cracking.

THIS JUST IN: THANKS TO THE GENEROSITY OF SO MANY IN OUR CHEESE COMMUNITY, TWO SCHOLARSHIPS HAVE BEEN FULLY FUNDED!! WE ARE ACCEPTING DONATIONS FOR A THIRD SCHOLARSHIP UNTIL 4/30 AND WINNERS OF THE SCHOLARSHIPS WILL BE ANNOUNCED MAY 1.

Our Facebook Cheese Study Group is raising funds to send worthy ACS CCP exam® candidates and ACS CCPs® who want to attend the 2017 ACS Conference in Denver, Cheese With Altitude. You can apply for a scholarship by clicking hereand you can contribute to the scholarship fund by clicking here. All monies raised (withe the exception of the fees charged by GoFundMe) go to the winners of the scholarship. everyone involved in the scholarship efforts is donating their time and receiving NO fees or monetary compensation… just the feeling of helping those who need our help. Complete rules and information can be found here

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