Thursday, November 09, 2006
Formaggio da Travola
In Italy, table cheeses are known as formaggio da tavola. As you noticed in the photo, this was presented to us each morning for breakfast. I can not begin to tell you how wonderful this combination tasted.....those who have had this before, you know what I mean. Once again, the unexpected ingredients of flavors filled my plate as I piled on the cheese "sky-high" trying not to look as if I was starving. I really couldn't help myself...............
Unlike the French cheeses, the Italian cheeses are more famous for use in "cooking" rather than for being eaten as a course alone. (As for my observations, cheese was always offered after every course, normally a very sweet blue.) The cooking cheeses are known as formaggio per cucina and what I think is the most famous is the Parmigiano Reggiano. This cheese is rarely eaten as part of a cheese platter outside of Italy..... this is the perfect cheese eaten with a fresh figs or a thin slice of proscuitto. Another fresh cheese is the ball of buffalo mozzarella served with some juicy ripe tomatoes and fresh green basil. And, my favorite, fresh ricotta sweetened with some honey. As you can see, the fresh farm cheese served with the pears was my choice.
The wonderful thing about being away from home is eating differently. I know fresh cheese and a slice of fruit would take third place next to the oatmeal and eggs at my house.( I generally sneak in a piece of fruit with my cereal, though.) Trying to find and buy fresh cheese is the problem where I live..... I definatley could be satisfied with that each day! Happy Cooking!