Provolone, Tasty meeting between North and South

 

Among the best known and popular cheeses of Italy, Provolone is a DOP fat and semi-hard made from cow's milk, whose origin is linked to a lucky and unpredictable encounter between dairy processes of the North and South Italy. It was first produced in the Po Valley in the second half of the nineteenth century, from the happy marriage between the cheese culture of "spun paste" coming from the south and the dairy vocation of northern territories. 

In 1861 the unification of Italy made it possible to overcome the barriers between the different areas of the peninsula and thus the settlement of entrepreneurs from the south, who had moved in the provinces of Piacenza, Cremona and Brescia their production activities. Later it spread throughout the Italian territory assuming various forms, from the most common to the cylindrical pear, and as many flavors, ranging from spicy to sweet to smoked, depending on the amount of rennet and seasoning. The latter can last from 10 days to 12 months, determining the consistency and persistence of taste and allowing you to get many varieties of this tasty specialties, of which certainly Valpadana is the best known and appreciated.

Another highlight is the etymology of the name, which appears to be of relatively recent origin; it seems in fact that the first official mention is found in a vocabulary of Agriculture of 1871. Some sources date this term to the keyword provola or prova, that seems to refer to the sample that was used to control, during the processing steps, the degree of spinning product. Others say it derives from the Neapolitan word provatura, which indicates a spherical shape. Also given the similarity with the verb provare, which in Italian means both "give it a try" and "groped to conquer, seduce a person”, the term provolone is also used to indicate a seducer, Casanova, Don Juan, but with a meaning more ironic and ridiculous, pointing to a man who tries to seduce any girl that encounters and often with little serious intentions, is a term often used like a joke among friends. Even in the kitchen provolone is widely used, as apt to be eaten alone as well as an ingredient for first dishes, second and quiches. Extremely versatile cheese with a delicate flavor, thanks to these qualities has established itself abroad in a really short time, and is known as one of the most popular table cheeses made in Italy. A delight to taste, whether you are a "provolone" or not!

A flakey or diced, seasoned or mild, a delicacy that satisfies every palate. The IT5 of the week has the unmistakable scent of the Belpaese. Come and find out more.