Mozzarella (English: //, Italian: [mottsaˈrɛlla]; Neapolitan: muzzarella [muttsaˈrɛllə]) is a traditionally southern Italian cheese made from Italian buffalo's milk by the pasta filata method. Mozzarella received a Traditional Specialities Guaranteed (TSG) certification from the European Union in 1998. This protection scheme requires that mozzarella sold in the European Union is produced according to a traditional recipe.
|Country of origin||Italy|
|Source of milk||Italian Mediterranean buffalo traditionally; cattle cows in all Italian regions; in some areas also sheep and goat|
|Related media on Wikimedia Commons|
The TSG certification does not specify the source of the milk, so any type of milk can be used, but it is speculated that it is normally made from whole milk. In Italy, mozzarella made from the milk of the Italian water buffalo is an important variety; the Italian buffalo mozzarella sold as Mozzarella di Bufala Campana is protected under the EU's Protected Designation of Origin scheme and may only be produced in select locations in the regions of Campania, Lazio, Apulia and Molise.
Fresh mozzarella is generally white but may vary seasonally to slightly yellow depending on the animal's diet. Due to its high moisture content, it is traditionally served the day after it is made but can be kept in brine for up to a week or longer when sold in vacuum-sealed packages. Low-moisture mozzarella can be kept refrigerated for up to a month, though some shredded low-moisture mozzarella is sold with a shelf life of up to six months. Mozzarella of several kinds is used for most types of pizza and several pasta dishes or served with sliced tomatoes and basil in Caprese salad.
Mozzarella, derived from the Neapolitan dialect spoken in Campania, is the diminutive form of mozza ("cut"), or mozzare ("to cut off") derived from the method of working. The term is first mentioned in 1570, cited in a cookbook by Bartolomeo Scappi, reading "milk cream, fresh butter, ricotta cheese, fresh mozzarella and milk". An earlier reference is also often cited as describing mozzarella. Historian Monsignor Alicandri, in "Chiesa Metropolitana di Capua," states that in the 12th century the Monastery of Saint Lorenzo, in Capua, Campania offered pilgrims a piece of bread with mozza or provatura. These are locations rather than products and mozza is taken by some to be mozzarella.
Mozzarella, recognised as a Specialità Tradizionale Garantita (STG) since 1996, is available fresh, usually rolled into a ball of 80 to 100 grams (2.8 to 3.5 oz) or about 6 cm (2.4 in) in diameter, and sometimes up to 1 kg (2.2 lb) or about 12 cm (4.7 in) diameter. It is soaked in salt water (brine) or whey, and other times citric acid is added and it is partly dried (desiccated), its structure being more compact. In this last form it is often used to prepare dishes cooked in the oven, such as lasagna and pizza.
When twisted to form a plait mozzarella is called treccia. Mozzarella is also available in smoked (affumicata) and reduced-moisture, packaged varieties.
Several variants have been specifically formulated and prepared for use on pizza, such as low-moisture Mozzarella cheese. The International Dictionary of Food and Cooking defines this cheese as "a soft spun-curd cheese similar to Mozzarella made from cow's milk" that is "[u]sed particularly for pizzas and [that] contains somewhat less water than real Mozzarella".
Low-moisture part-skim mozzarella, widely used in the food-service industry, has a low galactose content, per some consumers' preference for cheese on pizza to have low or moderate browning.[nb 1] Some pizza cheeses derived from skim mozzarella variants were designed not to require aging or the use of starter. Others can be made through the direct acidification of milk.
In Italy, the cheese is produced nationwide using Italian buffalo's milk under the government's official name Mozzarella di latte di bufala because Italian buffalo is in all Italian regions. Only selected Mozzarella di bufala campana PDO is a type, made from the milk of Italian buffalo, raised in designated areas of Campania, Lazio, Apulia, and Molise. Unlike other mozzarellas—50% of whose production derives from non-Italian and often semi-coagulated milk—it holds the status of a protected designation of origin (PDO 1996) under the European Union.
Fior di latte is made from fresh pasteurized or unpasteurized cow's milk and not water buffalo milk, which greatly lowers its cost. Outside the EU, "mozzarella" not clearly labeled as deriving from water buffalo can be presumed to derive from cow milk. Mozzarella affumicata means smoked mozzarella.
Mozzarella of sheep milk, sometimes called "mozzarella pecorella", is typical of Sardinia, Abruzzo and Lazio, where it is also called 'mozzapecora'. It is worked with the addition of the rennet of lamb.
Mozzarella of goat's milk is of recent origin and the producers are still few; among the reasons for this new production is the need to offer a kind of mozzarella to those who do not digest cow's milk, because goat's milk is more digestible.
|Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)|
|Energy||300 kcal (1,300 kJ)|
|†Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults. |
Source: USDA Nutrient Database
Mozzarella di bufala is traditionally produced solely from the milk of the Italian Mediterranean buffalo. A whey starter is added from the previous batch that contains thermophilic bacteria, and the milk is left to ripen so the bacteria can multiply. Then, rennet is added to coagulate the milk. After coagulation, the curd is cut into large, 2.5 – 5 cm pieces, and left to sit so the curds firm up in a process known as healing.
After the curd heals, it is further cut into 1 – 1.5 cm large pieces. The curds are stirred and heated to separate the curds from the whey. The whey is then drained from the curds and the curds are placed in a hoop to form a solid mass. The curd mass is left until the pH is at around 5.2–5.5, which is the point when the cheese can be stretched and kneaded to produce a delicate consistency—this process is generally known as pasta filata. According to the Mozzarella di Bufala trade association, "The cheese-maker kneads it with his hands, like a baker making bread, until he obtains a smooth, shiny paste, a strand of which he pulls out and lops off, forming the individual mozzarella." It is then typically formed into cylinder shapes or in plait. In Italy, a "rubbery" consistency is generally considered not satisfactory; the cheese is expected to be softer.
Recognitions and regulationsEdit
Different variants of this dairy product are included in the list of traditional Italian agri-food products (P.A.T) of the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies (MIPAAF), with the following denominations:
- "Commission Regulation (EC) No 2527/98". Official Journal of the European Communities. European Commission. 41: L 317/14–18. 26 November 1998. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
- "Amendment Application Council Regulation (EC) No 510/2006". Official Journal of the European Communities. European Commission. 50: C 90/5–9. 25 March 2007. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
- "Commission Regulation (EC) No 103/2008". Official Journal of the European Communities. European Commission. 51: L 31/31. 5 February 2008. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
- Lambert, Paula. "Mozzarella Cheese". Sally's Place. Media Holdings. Retrieved 1 April 2008.
- Kotkin, Carole (October–November 2006). "Burrata mozzarella's creamy cousin makes a fresh impression". The Wine News Magazine. Archived from the original on 24 November 2007. Retrieved 1 April 2008.
- Staff. "Mozzarella". Healthnotes. PCC Natural Markets. Retrieved 1 April 2008.
- Correll, John (30 November 2011). "Chapter 8 – Cheese". The Original Encyclopizza: Pizza Ingredient Purchasing and Preparation. Fulfillment Press. ISBN 978-0-9820920-7-1. Retrieved 1 April 2008.
- Staff. "Shreds: Mozzarella, Low Moisture, Part Skim, Shredded, 6 oz". Organic Valley. Retrieved 1 April 2008.
- Staff. "Mozzarella". Merriam-Webster Dictionary Online. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
- Charter, David (29 March 2008). "Buffalo mozzarella in crisis after pollution fears at Italian farms". The Times. London. Retrieved 1 April 2008.(subscription required)
- Regolamento (CE) N. 2527/98 della commissione del 25 novembre 1998 registrando una denominazione - Mozzarella - nell'albo delle attestazioni di specificità. Gazzetta ufficiale delle Comunità europee L 317/14 del 26/11/1998.
- The Essential Fingerfood Cookbook, p. 40.
- Aikenhead, Charles (1 June 2003). "Permanently pizza: continuous production of pizza cheese is now a realistic proposition". Dairy Industries International. Archived from the original on 25 January 2013. Retrieved 30 September 2012. (subscription required)
- Fox, Patrick F. (1999). Cheese: Chemistry, Physics and Microbiology (Major Cheese Groups). Volume 2. Aspen Publishers, Inc. ISBN 9780834213395. Retrieved 27 September 2012. ISBN 0412535106
- Sinclair, Charles G. (1998). International Dictionary of Food and Cooking. Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers. p. 417. ISBN 1579580572. Retrieved 28 September 2012.
- Baskaran, D.; Sivakumar, S. (November 2003). "Galactose concentration in pizza cheese prepared by three different culture techniques". International Journal of Dairy Technology. 56 (4): 229–232. doi:10.1046/j.1471-0307.2003.00109.x.
- McMahon; et al. (5 September 2000). "Manufacture of Lower-fat and Fat-free Pizza Cheese". United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved 28 September 2012.
- Fiore, Roberto (4 June 2009). "Fermiamo il formaggio Frankenstein". La Stampa (in Italian). Archived from the original on 4 January 2014. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
- "Sardinian quality". Archived from the original on 18 August 2013. Retrieved 15 April 2013.
- Latium quality
- Abruzzo quality[permanent dead link]
- article in 'L'Espresso'
- Staff. "Campana Buffalo's Mozzarella Cheese". Mozzarella di Bufala Campana Trade Organization. Archived from the original on 17 October 2008. Retrieved 8 May 2007.
- "D.M. n° 54556 del 14/07/2017 "Diciassettesimo aggiornamento dell'elenco nazionale dei prodotti agroalimentari tradizionali ai sensi dell'articolo 12, comma 1, della legge 12 dicembre 2016, n. 238"". Gazzetta ufficiale della Repubblica Italiana nº 176 del 29/07/2017, Supplemento Ordinario nº 41.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mozzarella.|
|Look up mozzarella in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
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- Video How Mozzarella Cheese is Manufactured
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- Mozzarella di Bufala Campana trade organization
- The official DOP Consortium site – (Requires Flash)
- Sito di approndimento scientifico sulla mozzarella, e l'allevamento di bufala campana