Last Updated : Jan 11,2018
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This hard, salty, sharp cheese has its name derived from the city of Rome and is available in different styles. What makes each style different from the other is its source of creation. For example, the original romano is called pecorino romano and is made from sheep's milk, caprino romano is made from goat's milk and the mass produced versions created in the US are called vacchino romano and are made from cow's milk. Pecorino is sharp and tangy, caprino on the other hand has an extremely sharp taste, while vacchino is mild in flavour. Normally these cheese age for 5 months before being made ready for consumption. They generally have a fat content of 27% and a water content of 32%.
Chopped romano cheese
Place the cheese slab on a chopping board and chop it into small pieces. Can be finely chopped or roughly chopped or chopped into big chunks as per the recipe requirement.
Grated romano cheese
This requires grating the cheese slabs on a hand held grater. This grated cheese is fine in texture and is used for making baked dishes like au gratin or casseroles.
Romano cheese cubes
Turn the block of cheese on its side and make a series of slices. Lay the cheese slices on top of each other and make a series of lengthwise slices, (½ inch slices for smaller cubes, 1 inch slices for larger cubes). Make a series of ½ inch or 1 inch crosswise cuts through the cheese and it will fall away into cubes.
Romano cheese strips
Cut the cheese block into thin or thick strips as per the recipe requirement.
Shredded romano cheese
Pass the cheese through a shredder and separate the thin slices into shreds with fingers. Alternatively, you may buy packaged shredded cheese, if available.
Sliced romano cheese
You may place the cheese in a slicer or slice the cheese in thin or thick slices with a sharp knife, as per the recipe requirement.
How to select
• Purchasing a wedge of Romano is more suitable than buying the pre-grated form as the latter retains the moisture content and freshness for longer.
• Always taste a small piece of the cheese before you buy it to ensure quality, flavour and freshness.
• Irrespective of the source of milk used Romano cheese should exude a rich, creamy flavour with a mild, crunchy granular texture. This ensures that the Romano is of high quality.
• In case you're unable to taste the cheese, test the wedge's colour. It should be even with no signs of cracking, excessive dryness, or moisture.
• The great thing about this cheese is that it is delicious eaten plain because of the versatility of its flavour, taste and texture.
• Grated and melted in soups and sauces or baked atop crackers ensures that you have a handy appetiser or starter for surprise guests.
• Any recipe that calls for a hard cheese can be improvised upon with a hard cheese of your choice. Like so with Romano. Mashed potatoes, shepherd's pie, macaroni and cheese, omelettes, pizza, soufflés, au gratins, fondues, are a few examples.
• Delightful when paired with fruits like apples and pears as it cuts through the fruity notes with sharp, tangy, dairy flavours.
How to store
• All cheeses, regardless of variety, should be well wrapped and kept in the warmest section of the refrigerator. (The refrigerator door is often one of the warmest spots).
• As storage life is related to the moisture content of the cheese, the softer the cheese, the shorter amount of time it will keep fresh.
• Regardless of the type of milk used to create it, Romano is a concentrated source of the nutrients naturally found in milk, including calcium.
• This cheese also contains a large amount of other essential nutrients such as phosphorous, zinc, riboflavin, vitamin B12 and vitamin A.
• It is a dense source of high quality protein.
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