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Pecorino Romano
Creative Commons / Deanna from Chicago 'burbs

Pecorino Romano

Pecorino is a term used to define Italian cheeses made from 100% sheep’s milk. However, the American counterpart of the cheese is made from cow’s milk. Of the four Pecorino cheeses that have received Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) status under European Union law, Pecorino Romano is one of the most ancient types of cheese as well as the most famous outside of Italy. As per legislation, production of Pecorino Romano is allowed only on the islands of Sardinia, Lazio and in the Tuscan Province of Grosseto. All these varieties differ from each other, depending on how much they have aged.

As the name suggests, the history of Pecorino Romano dates back to the Roman times when it was a part of the staple diet of soldiers at war. Roman authors, including Varro, Pliny the Elder, Hippocrates and Columella have mentioned about the cheese & its production technique, in their works. Even today, the cheese is made using only traditional methods in the unique areas of origin. Dry-salted by hand, the wheels get a salting numerous times, to deliver a fabulous taste. Its lengthy aging time from eight to 12 months results in a dry and granular texture and a strong taste. When young, the cheese has a soft and rubbery texture with sweet and aromatic flavour. The flavour becomes sharper and smokier when aged for eight months or longer.

Pecorino Romano is one of most widely used, sharper alternatives to Parmesan cheeses. Because of the hard texture and sharp & salty flavour, Pecorino Romano is an excellent grating cheese over pasta dishes, breads and baking casseroles. Although, the use of the cheese is limited because of its extreme saltiness. Pair it with a glass of big, bold Italian red wine or a light beer.

  • Made from pasteurized or unpasteurized cow's or sheep's milk
  • Country of origin: Italy
  • Region: Lazio, Sardinia
  • Family: Pecorino
  • Type: hard
  • Fat content: 50%
  • Texture: crumbly, dense, flaky and grainy
  • Rind: natural
  • Colour: pale yellow
  • Flavour: salty, sharp, smokey , spicy
  • Aroma: nutty, strong
  • Vegetarian: no

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Top photos from Twitter

Jan 09
Baked #Zucchini Sticks. Pecorino Romano #Cheese and bread crumb coating. #Marinara sauce. #Pork chop. Lets eat!
Nov 21, 2014
Chili,cheese and a hotdog in a tortilla then deep fried with scallions, pecorino romano cheese and bacon on top.
Sep 22, 2014
Pecorino Romano cheese wheel is a rich creamy white skin.
Sep 09, 2014
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Sep 06, 2014
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Aug 17, 2014
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Aug 15, 2014
@PastaPantry: Grana Padano Parmigiano, Pecorino Romano, Ricotta and Asiago: Mac N Cheese Heaven. #yeg #shpk” *Drool
Aug 10, 2014
.@hey_peachy the beet salad with goat cheese croquet and shaved Pecorino Romano is awesome #lunch #BurlON #salad
Jul 22, 2014
Dinner on a hot summer evening : Sautéed eggplant, tomatoes, sauce, & Pecorino Romano cheese
Jul 20, 2014
@HomeRunInn ultra thin cheese prepared with onions, jalapeño, oregano, basil and pecorino Romano cheese. OMG!
Jul 08, 2014
Pappardelle with sugar snap peas, jalapeño, green onion, and parsley in a sauce of pecorino Romano cheese. #food ...
Jun 25, 2014
Creamy Pecorino Romano. In Ancient Rome, this sheep's milk cheese was a constant in the diet of legionaries. #bbhg
Jun 07, 2014
Linguine Cacio e Pepe • Pecorino Romano cheese and freshly ground pepper #SantAmbroeus #SoHo #pasta #cacioepepe
Jun 03, 2014
Simple & Delicious, spaghetti with marinara sauce, spicy prawns and Aged Pecorino Romano cheese🍴
May 20, 2014
The power of cheese. "@CiaoLaura: Whole wheels of Pecorino Romano in Trastevere. A sight to behold. #bliss #foodie
May 18, 2014
Honey-Orange chicken, grilled eggplant & tomato, pecorino romano cheese & pomegranate balsamic #LetADCook #foodporn
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