between halloumi and mozzarella, the match of the summer

En 2020, according to figures from FranceAgriMer-Kantar: sales of cow’s milk cheeses for home consumption took off by 8.5% during the first year in confinement, with mozzarella leading this increase (+ 21.2 %), ahead of raclette (+ 12.2%) and Comté (+ 8.2%).

Mozzarella or Italy with a melting heart

It is a fresh, soft and immaculate pillow that the French can not do without. Hoisting the white flag of mozzarella has become a seasonal reflex, even if the consumption of this Italian emblem tends to be distributed throughout the year.

” From a cow ? “, one will object. Because purists swear by mozzarella di bufala Campana, made from buffalo milk, which has benefited from a PDO (protected designation of origin, DOP in Italian) since 1996. A production that perpetuates the original gesture: mozzare, it is to cut by hand the still hot spun dough resulting from a curd obtained thanks to rennet (enzymes of animal origin) and stirred in a tank with boiling water to create a “cheese thread. »Melted.

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Shaped into balls, braids, beads or small knots, this authentic mozzarella (which can also be obtained with good cow’s milk fior di latte) exhales, on the nose then in the mouth, fresh, delicate, herbaceous, slightly salty and sometimes acidulous aromas. Something in us from Campania (or Puglia, Molise …), character, presence, flavor – noble qualities that industrial substitutes, obtained in haste with citric acid, sometimes milk powder and mechanized processes, have too often eclipsed.

Mozzarella reveals all its flavors at room temperature, but it thrills everyone with its melting abilities.

Is it because of this surge of standardized products that queen mozzarella has started to falter on her throne, in competition with her own cousins? Wearing a brown dress, her smoked version (affumicata) seduces when smoking remains discreet. Scamorza, plain or smoked too, has a tight neck and a firmer body. But the main threat comes from the burrata, plump and seductive with its heart overflowing with cream: as soon as titillated, it spreads shamelessly on summer plates, when the portions of mozzarella know how to keep their stand and their rank.

Tasted raw, with a simple drizzle of olive oil, mozzarella reveals all its flavors at room temperature. Italians appreciate it ultra-fresh, firm and elastic; the cheese maker François Robin, Meilleur Ouvrier de France, prefers it more advanced: ” With time, he pleads, the fiber breaks and softens. ” In the cooked version, it will delight everyone with its melting capacities: breaded, fried or in carrozza (“In a carriage”, compressed into a sandwich), but also as a perfect escort of summer vegetables, eggplant and tomato especially, in gratins, stuffed, pizzas … His supremacy, well established, is far from hanging by a thread .

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