Mozzarella, Molto Bella!
Let's talk about cheese baby, let's talk about pizza please! Alright we might not be the best singers, but our hearts are in the right place. This time on the Streets of New York blog we wanted to take a look at one of the key ingredients of our pizzas, pastas, and more – mozzarella.
Mozzarella by the Books
A dictionary will tell you that mozzarella is a mild, semi-soft white Italian cheese, often used in Italian cooking as a melted topping, especially on pizzas. But there's just so much more to it! The word comes from mozzare, meaning 'to cut off.'
How Mozzarella is Made
In Italy, the best mozzarella comes from Italian buffalos. This is called mozzarella di bufala, and made only using milk from the Italian Mediterranean buffalo, which are found throughout Italy.
First, a whey starter from a previous batch of mozzarella is added to milk. That starter is crucial because it contains the thermophilic bacteria that needs to multiple for mozzarella. When milk is added the bacteria can get to work, then enzymes called rennet are added to the milk to coagulate into curd. The curd is first cut into large pieces, then allowed to heal (or firm), then are cut again. They are stirred and heated to separate the whey and the curds. The curds are placed into a hoop where they then form a solid mass. The mass is left alone until it's pH reaches the perfect point (roughly 5.2-5.5 for those who need to know). At this point the cheese is ready to be worked to produce the needed consistency. The cheese-maker will then knead it with their hands until it makes a smooth, shiny paste. Then they pull a strand of it and cut it off, making the mozzarella ready for use!
From here the cheese is usually used within a day after being made, because it is so high in moisture. There are ways you can make it last, and still keep its flavor. You can store mozzarella in a brine for up to a week.
How Mozzarella is Used
Now, this is where the fun begins! Mozzarella is a perfect cheese to get melty, gooey, goodness to any meal. Let's just show you what we're talking about!
That's how we use it at least!
Does all this cheesy talk get your mouth watering? We know what that's like! Order delivery and enjoy mozzarella goodness in no time at all! Whether you want pizza, pasta, wings, or all of it, Streets of New York is here to deliver that excellent East Coast flavor!
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