Parmesan cheese – the classic cheese from Italy

Did you know that the name for parmesan cheese was actually a collective name for cheeses with a certain consistency? Authentic parmesan cheese is the one we call Parmigiano Reggiano. Even though parmesan cheese is nowadays a sacred name, it’s still good to look for Parmigiano Reggiano to make sure that you get authentic parmesan cheese.

The making of parmesan cheese started at the end of the 10th century and was called Grana Padano, it’s roughly translated as “the grainy cheese”. Parmigiano means that the cheese is from Parma and later on this became the official name for the popular cheese.

Same recipe for parmesan cheese for almost 1000 years

Parmesan cheese has been produced the same way for over a thousand years- isn’t that amazing? If you eat a piece of parmesan cheese today, you can imagine the flavorful experience the people had that lived in the 10th century.

Nowadays the parmesan cheese is tagged with it’s origin, so you as a consumer know that the cheese has been produced in the area around Parma. There’s a quality stamp that assures you that parmesan cheese holds the highest quality.

Authentic aged parmesan cheese

How do they produce the classical parmesan cheese according to the old recipe? The aging process determines first and foremost the taste and consistency of the parmesan cheese. An authentic parmesan cheese is aged between 18 to 36 months. The most common way of aging the cheese is two years. Generally speaking, the longer you age the cheese the former it gets, it also gets drier and more flavorful.

Are there different types of parmesan cheese?

There are several well known names for parmesan cheese, these are the most common ones:

  • Parmesan cheese
  • Grana Padano
  • Parmigiano Reggiano
  • Mountain parmesan

Mountain parmesan is a special and more expensive variant of parmesan cheese, where the production is being handled by dairy farmers that have cows who’s grazing in the mountains. The taste of this cheese is a bit leaner but has a richer flavor than regular parmesan cheese.

For it to be classified as mountain parmesan, the cows need på grazing on a mountain that’s 450 meter above sea level.

Did you know that parmesan cheese is good for you?

Not only is parmesan cheese very tasteful, but it’s also healthy. The cheese contains a lot of calcium, which strengthens your bones. The cheese is therefore very good for children but also the elderly.