Not All Cheese is the Same!
Nor would we want them to be. From a delightfully rich Gorgonzola to a creamy ball of fresh mozzarella, we love cheese. There’s something to love about every type of cheese. Especially when they’re included in our favorite Spizzico dishes. Of course, not all cheese is created the same way. So, let’s take a look at some popular Italian cheeses and the best way to enjoy them.
Region: Gorgonzola, Italy
Gorgonzola is a veined Italian cheese, similar to blue cheese. However, unlike blue cheeses, it is made from unskimmed cow’s milk. This gives it a milder taste than blue cheese. It can be buttery or firm, crumbly and salty. Just because it is milder than some blue cheese, it still boasts a strong flavor. That is why it is best served with milder flavors like apples, grapes, walnuts, and a crusty loaf of bread. It is also delicious served with marmalade or honey. Gorgonzola is also widely cooked into a creamy sauce for pasta or gnocchi or as a topping on salads and pizza.
If you would love to try this versatile cheese, try out Ravioli or our Gnocchi. Both can be enjoyed with our creamy gorgonzola cheese sauce. It’s a great addition to these classic Italian dishes.
Region: Campania, Italy
This might not need an introduction. Mozzarella is a fresh, pulled-curd cheese made from the milk of cows, called mozzarella Dior si latte. However, it can be made from water buffalo, called mozzarella di bufala. It’s also one of the healthiest cheeses too. The cheese curds are heated in water and then stretched by hand before being rolled into balls. The balls are then sold fresh or packed into a salty brine for added flavor. Fresh, soft creamy mozzarella pairs great with tomatoes, olives, pesto, tapenade, and basil.
Of course, no slice of pizza would be the same without it. And, that includes our Margherita pizza featuring fresh mozzarella, basil, and extra virgin olive oil. You can also try our housemade mozzarella in our Mozzarella Caprese on our starters menu.
Ricotta translates to “recooked” in Italian. That’s because it’s made from the whey, or liquid, leftover from the process of making hard cheeses. The whey is heated with a small amount of vinegar or citrus causing the few curds left over to coagulate. The curds are then placed in cheesecloth and strained, resulting in a bunch of fluffy, slightly sweet white ricotta.
The most obvious uses of ricotta are fillings in lasagna, stuffed shells, and manicotti. But, it’s also fantastic when scooped onto other dishes like pasta, soup, or pizza. The best way to enjoy ricotta is with Spizzico’s lasagna! Our signature recipe features ricotta, meat-sauce, Parmigiano, and mozzarella cheeses.
Region: Province of Parma, Italy
Parmigiano-Reggiano, or Parmesan as you might know it, is considered to be among the top cheeses by cheese connoisseurs. Why? It’s like a fine wine. Aged for 12-36 months, true Parmesan has a hard, gritty texture. It also is fruity and nutty in taste. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese is mostly grated over pasta or used in soups and risottos. But, it is equally a delicious thinly shaved on its own as a snack.
You can enjoy Parmigiano on our house-made Caesar or Argula salad. We also grate it over many of our pasta dishes. It can also be found on three of our hand-tossed pizzas. There are many ways you can enjoy Parmigiano at Spizzico.
Get Cheesy at Spizzico!
So, there you have it, folks! Whether you enjoy a fancy cheese platter or thinly shaved cheese over your favorite pasta dish, it’s an Italian staple. Just don’t forget the wine! Also, be sure to visit Spizzico Italian Kitchen in Edgewater and Arnold. Check out our full menu here.