The traditional Puglia cheese, the burrata
Burrata is one of the most famous cheeses in Italy, and it was popular with the people due to its lightness, flavor and unique texture! Burrata is typical of the region of Apulia and today we will learn more about this jewel in the form of cheese. Let’s get to our post of the day? Burrata, the traditional cheese from Apulia.
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First, what is Burrata? Burrata is a fresh cheese made with creamy paste milk with a rounded shape. Its external appearance is similar to that of mozzarella and its consistency is smooth, with a very characteristic flavor: fresh, delicious. Read also Let’s get to know the 10 best wineries in Apulia?
The Creation of the Burrata
The creation of the burrata is the result of the wise milk art of Apulia, in particular the city of Andria. It is said that in an old farm, in the first decades of the last century, Lorenzo Bianchino invented Andria’s burrata. It all started because of a heavy snowfall, which prevented him from transporting. In order not to lose his production, he had to think fast and find a way to use milk to avoid possible damage. Thus, the milk, over the hours, turned into a cream naturally and, following the concept of production of the mantéche, (wrappers used to make butter), he tried to make a fresh product with the same principle; this way, Burrata would have been born. Mr. Bianchino thought about mixing the residues from the processing of the dough filaments with a little cream and wrapping everything in a wrapper made of spun dough: it was done! The taste was surprising and pleased those who tasted it. Read also What are the 10 must-see places in Apulia?
The set of cream and “filaments” of spun milk paste is called stracciatella. The stracciatela derives from the cheese preparation methods and is made by hand, so that the dough is not compacted. The weight of the cheese varies from 100 to 1000 grams and has a white appearance. The consistency of the “filling” is that of a worn and spongy mass immersed in the cream, extremely creamy. The shape is of a round pouch, with a characteristic apical closure. The aroma offers pleasant touches of fresh or cooked lactic, butter and cream, in a mixture of very pleasant smells. Its flavor is of sweet notes, with touches of room and a little acid, all very well balanced.
Learn the Burrata’s Production Stages
The burrata is produced throughout the year, and the strictly artisanal method involves the following steps:
The production of Burrata begins with the pasteurization of raw milk in the boiler at a temperature that can vary between 35 ° and 37 ° C
The milk is fermented naturally with selected yeasts, graft of milk or whey; industrial food acids, such as citric or lactic acid, can also be used to obtain a pH around 6.1-6.2.
With the addition of rennet, the intention is for the milk to curdle in a few minutes. After curdling, the curd is divided to obtain hazelnut-sized grains. After the necessary interval, there is a resting period for the whey to separate naturally and for the coagulation to incorporate the slightly acidic flavor that is one of the characteristics of this cheese.
After the ripening period, just after coagulation, the curd is centrifuged with boiling water, and, if necessary, this is when the salt enters.
Formation and Cooling
When worked properly, the cheese mass must be reduced into strips, then cooled in water and then “worn”, forming a spongy mass that, when mixed with the liquid cream, will be the filling of the Burrata. The rest of the dough is forged in bags that are filled with the previously prepared mixture and molded. Then, the mold is sealed – carefully, so as not to break the film – with boiling water and / or tied to the neck with threads. Then it should immediately take a thermal shock of water so that it is in the desired shape.
The salting phase can occur by immersion in brine after cooling or in paste during spinning. It depends a lot on who prepares it and there is no “correct” way: the process, both during and after, leaves the cheese with an incredible flavor.
The Burrata is packed with a characteristic pre-wrapping, placed in plastic food bags, wrapped in plasticized paper and tied at the apex with raffia rods for food use; it can also be closed under vacuum. The size of each package can vary between 100 and 1000 grams and, when ready, the cheese must be stored at a temperature between 4 ° and 6 ° C. The packaging can also be made in trays, where the cheese is immersed in the liquid according to the determination of the Italian Ministry of Agriculture.
In November 2016, Burrata di Andria obtained the recognition of the Indicazione Geografica Protteta (IGP) by the European Union. Production is permitted throughout the regional territory, but the cow’s milk with which it is produced must meet certain organoleptic characteristics. The IGP also requires that certain stages of production are strictly regulated. The production IGP seal is protected by the Burrata di Andria Consortium.
Source: Vem pra Puglia
Good to know
Several variants of this cheese are included in the list of traditional Italian agrifood products, the famous P.A.T, from the Ministry of Agricultural and Forestry Policies (Mipaaf), with the following names: Burrini and buffalo burrata (Campania); Buffalo burrata (Lazio) and Burrata (Apulia). But they are the same style of cheese.
In cooking, it is used in several dishes: pizzas, pasta, with bread – as an antipasto, seasoned with olive oil, and even without any accompaniment, except a good glass of wine. Speaking of wine, the best wine to pair with Burrata is Primitivo di Manduria, a delicious DOC red wine produced in Taranto.
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Burrata, the traditional cheese from Apulia! Versatile, Burrata is one of the most democratic cheeses in the world. It is not difficult to please the most demanding palates, as it is an extremely tasty cheese, but light at the same time, and it is easy to combine it with various preparations and cold cuts.
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