The Making of Grana Padano Cheese

Grana Padano Cheese

Driving through the gorgeous Brescian countryside on a magnificent May day, we arrived at Gardalatte in Lonato to see how Grana Padano cheese is produced. Grana Padano is a hard, semi fat, cow’s milk cheese with a rich, slightly salty taste and is one of Italy’s most produced and consumed cheeses.

Luigi, the head casaro or cheese maker gave us the latest in Italian fashion to wear-paper gowns, booties and hairnets…and the tour began.

Luigi the head casaro or cheese maker

Specially raised & fed Friesian aka Holstein cows are milked twice a day and only from dairies authorized by the Grana Padano Protection Consortium.

Cows waiting to be milked.

Next in line for milking!

The milk is heated in large copper kettles.

Warming the milk in copper kettles

After the rennet is added, the milk is stirred until large, round balls of cheese are formed.

Balls of Cheese

The cheese is put into plastic molds for one day and the linen lining is changed every six hours.

Grana Padano cheese in molds

Every Grana Padano cheese is registered with a serial number that specifies where and when it was produced.

Gardalatte serial number

Grana Padano cheese serial number

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grana Padano cheese is aged at least 9 months at which time a director of the Consortium arrives to taste and test the cheese to make sure it’s good enough to be called Grana Padano.

Grana Padano Cheese

Young Grana Padano CheeseGrana Padano Cheese

Enjoy Grana Padano cheese with almost any type of food or on its own- either grated over cooked pasta or roasted vegetables or in chunky pieces with salumi, crusty bread, aged balsamic vinegar or fruit mostarda. And of course, always with a nice glass of wine!

Grated Grana Padano Cheese

CHEESE, that's really GRATE!


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