What is asiago?
Asiago refers to a type of an Italian cheese made from cow’s milk, whose texture may range from being soft to hard. This kind of cheese is used throughout Italy, as well as many other countries. The hard form of Asiago is commonly grated and included in several types of dishes, including pizza and pasta. Furthermore, it is characterized by its tangy scent and taste.
Asiago can come in two different forms, namely Asiago Pressato and Asiago d’Allevo. The former refers to the young form, while the latter is the term for an aged one. Asiago Pressato is also called fresh Asiago and is normally used as a topping for pizzas, savory pies, and as a filling for raviolis. Just like other fresh cheeses, the young form of Asiago has a moist, soft, and crumbly texture. It also has a nutty flavor and is a little sweet. On the other hand, the aged version is hard and is more astringent.
This type of cheese is categorized under a group called mountain cheeses, together with Gruyere and Emmentaler. Asiago can be made with the use of raw milk or pasteurized milk, and the taste of the cheese will vary depending on the kind of milk that is used in the production. Although the two types of milk can be utilized, the majority of consumers prefers raw milk because it gives out a more complex taste.
In order to produce Asiago Pressato, fresh whole milk is heated and added with rennet so that curds will form. The curds that were collected from this process will be pressed into a cheesecloth and will be allowed to age for about 40 days. On the other hand, in producing Asiago d’Allevo, partially skimmed milk is used and the curds will be allowed to mature for a longer period of time.