Cheese Varieties Glossary

by Mugnaini on April 18, 2013 in Cheese Varieties Glossary

Asiago — Is a Northern Italian cow’s milk cheese that’s smooth and soft when young (3-8 months) with sweet nutty flavor. Dries as it ages and is better for grating.

CaciocavalloGourd shaped stretched curd cheese made of cow’s milk. Texture and flavor are similar to provolone. Great melting cheese when young and drier and sharper as it ages.

Chèvre or Goat CheeseComes in many styles but for pizza I recommend one that is soft but slightly crumbly. Flavors are sharp and tangy.

CrescenzaSoft ripened cow’s milk fresh cheese. Aged only 2-3 weeks. Best to use immediately. It’s rich, creamy, soft and spreadable at room temperature. Blends well with herbs.

Dry JackAmerican hard cow’s milk cheese. Good for grating and has sweet and nutty flavors.

FontinaIs an Italian semi-firm cow’s milk cheese that melts well. It’s mild and nutty with slightly herbaceous flavors.

Fresh MozzarellaCow’s milk, semi-soft, high moisture, mild milky flavors.

Fromage BlancThe name means “fresh cheese” or “white cheese” in French. It’s a creamy soft cheese made with whole or skimmed milk and cream.

GoudaIs a Dutch semi-hard, cow’s milk cheese. It’s an excellent melting cheese with sweet fruity flavors. Intensifies as it ages.

Grana PadanoItalian Cheese made from cow’s milk. It’s an excellent grating and melting cheese. It is similar to Parmigiano-Reggiano but has been aged for less time and has a more delicate flavor. Is less expensive than Parmigiano-Reggiano.

GruyereIs a Swiss semi-soft, cow’s milk that’s creamy and milky when young. It’s an excellent melting cheese and becomes earthy with sometimes-musty aromas as it ages.

Parmigiano-ReggianoIs an Italian cow’s milk hard cheese that has a hard granular texture that’s excellent for grating. Aromatic, rich nutty, and sharp flavors.

PecorinoIs the name of a family of hard Italian cheeses made from ewe’s milk. The more matured cheeses are harder but still crumbly in texture and have decidedly buttery and nutty flavors. Is excellent for grating.

ProvoloneDomestic or Imported semi-hard stretched curd cheese made from cow’s milk. Dolce is the youngest aged 2-3 months. It’s an excellent melting cheese with a mild, sweet taste. Provolone Piccante is older aged 6-months to 2-years and is dry with a sharper flavor.

Pt. Reyes Original BlueAmerican, all natural farmstead cow’s milk. Firm, creamy with sharp, piquant flavors.

Smoked MozzarellaMozzarella that’s been specially treated by smoke curing. It has a light golden brown outer shell and is lightly salted. Its low moisture content makes it ideal for melting.

TaleggioNorthern Italian cow’s milk washed rind cheese that is semi-soft with an oozing texture. Rich buttery flavors, strong sometimes-pungent aroma.

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