Fior di Latte vs Mozzarella
While they both find their roots in the Campania region of southern Italy, they differ in one very important manner. Fior di Latte is traditionally made using exclusively cow’s milk whereas Mozzarella is traditionally made with buffalo milk. Hence, the locals call the latter Mozzarella di Bufala.
How Fior di Latte is made
The art of pasta filata is something that has been passed on from one generation to another in Italy. It always starts with warming up the finest local milk, in this case, pasteurised cow’s milk. To this milk, the cheese maker (or casaro in Italian) adds rennet for coagulation. Once the curds are formed, they cut them into small pieces to allow the whey to drain.
After allowing the curd to rest for a few hours, they transfer it into a bath of very hot whey. As a result of the high temperature, the curds start to soften. Using their hands, the cheese maker starts to stretch the curds until the texture is soft, elastic and stringy. This artful process is known as pasta filata (or stretched curd).
Finally, they shape the fresh cheese into small balls and store them in a water based solution. You can watch this entire process in the video above. Isn’t it just mesmerising?
How to eat Fior di Latte
Because it is made with cow’s milk, it has a more subtle and lighter flavour than Mozzarella. Furthermore, this cheese has a higher moisture content and, as such, has a softer texture than its more well-known counterpart.
Without a doubt, this delicate cheese is best eaten within a few days of production. Just like Mozzarella, it is an excellent topping for pizzas. Moreover, it can also be served fresh in a Caprese salad.
Where can I buy it?
You want to try this Italian delight out for yourself now right? Your best best will be to try your local cheese shop or speciality deli. Moreover, it is a staple at most Italian specialty food stores. If you can’t find it in a shop near you, you can buy it online by clicking on the button below.
Substitutes for Fior di Latte
If you are unable to get your hands on Fior di Latte, there a couple of fresh Italian cheeses that are worthy alternatives. Unsurprisingly, Buffalo Mozzarella can replace Fior di Latte in most recipes. Its rich, buttery and creamy flavour means that it can slot right in.
Also, the smaller Bocconcini is basically a young Mozzarella with a very similar flavour and texture. Due to its bite-size dimensions, it is an excellent addition to a cheese plate or a salad.
Thank you for reading
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