Origins and production area
The origins of this cheese date back to the 16th century. The feeding of the cows from which the milk derives must mainly consist of spontaneous and herbaceous essences, possibly affienati, of the production area.
Production Area: Valtellina and the whole territory of the province of Sondrio.
The Protected Designation of Origin was recognized on July 1, 1996.
Valtellina Casera DOP (photo www.guffantiformaggi.com)
Characteristics and production phases
- Characteristics and production phases
The milk from two or more milkings is partially skimmed by surfacing: the milk given in the evening is left to rest in trays and then skimmed, while the milk from the following morning is added whole. Coagulation is obtained with the use of calf rennet and cooking takes place at a temperature between 40 ° and 45 ° C. Maturation lasts at least 70 days.
The shapes are cylindrical, regular, with flat surfaces and with a straight edge. The diameter is about 30-45 cm., The height of 8-10 cm. and the weight varies from 7 to 12 kg.
The pasta has a compact structure and has a fine and diffuse holes. When cut, the color varies from white to straw yellow, depending on the seasoning. The flavor of the Valtellina Casera is sweet, characteristic, with a note of dried fruit, delicate, and becomes more intense with the progress of maturation.
Gastronomy and recommended wines
Excellent table cheese, it can be used grated as a seasoning after adequate seasoning.
Production specification - Valtellina Casera DOP
The protected designation of origin "Valtellina Casera" is reserved for the cheese produced in the geographical area referred to in Article 2 of this specification and having the following requirements set.
The area of origin of the milk destined for the transformation of "Valtellina Casera" cheese, as well as the area of transformation, maturing and conditioning includes the entire territory of the province of Sondrio.
The "Valtellina Casera" semi-fat cheese produced exclusively with raw-breed cow's milk from traditional breeds in the area identified in art. 2 of this specification is obtained in compliance with specific requirements relating to breeding and the obtaining process, which comply with the following production standard:
a) the feeding of the cows from which the milk derives must consist mainly of spontaneous and herbaceous essences possibly associated with the area delimited by art.2 and of the territory called "Pian di Spagna" in the municipalities of Gera Lario and Sorico, in the province of Como , between the Mera river, the Adda river and Lake Como and part of the "Pian di Spagna - Lago di Mezzola" Regional Nature Reserve.
b) The milk from two or more milkings is partially skimmed before being subjected to coagulation using the spontaneous development of the dairy microflora.
c) Coagulation is obtained with the use of calf rennet. The curd is cooked at a temperature between 40 and 45 ° C and lasts for about 30 minutes.
The breaking of the curd occurs until the lumps have the size of dimais grains. Once extracted, the pasta is placed in traditional molds bearing the brand described in art.4 and lightly pressed gradually for about 8 - 12 hours. The salting takes place dry or in brine. Maturation is carried out in special rooms at a temperature of 6-13 ° C and with relative humidity of not less than 80%. Maturation must be continued for at least seventy days. Starting from the 70th day from the date of production, the appointed Consortium of Protection, after the control carried out by the Control Body with a positive result, affixes the fire-branded mark described in Article 4, point b on the forms.
The characteristics of the "Valtellina Casera" PDO are the following:
a) Shape: regular cylindrical, with flat surfaces and with a straight edge.
b) Dimensions: the diameter of the faces is 30 - 45 cm; the height of the heel is 8 - 10 cm.
c) Variable weight from 7 kg to 12 kg in relation to the size of the shape.
The shape, dimensions and weight may undergo slight variations in relation to the technical conditions of production and the maturation period.
d) External appearance: compact rind, straw yellow color more intense with seasoning, between 2 and 4 millimeters thick.
e) Pasta: structure of medium consistency, elastic with scattered and basically fine holes;
when cut, the color varies from white to straw yellow, depending on the period of production and seasoning.
f) Taste: sweet, characteristic, with a particular aroma, more intense with the aging process.
g) Fat on dry matter: not less than 34%.
h) Average humidity at 70 days: 41%.
The product can also be used grated as a seasoning.
The cheese with a protected designation of origin "Valtellina Casera" must bear the following markings on the barefoot when it is released for consumption, to guarantee compliance with the specific regulatory requirements:
a) the origin mark, which forms an integral part of this specification; at the time of production, this brand is stamped with a Marchera stamp issued by the Consortium for the Protection of Valtellina Casera and Bitto cheeses and, in addition to the aforementioned brand, the EEC stamp of the dairy and numbers for identifying the manufacturer and the production date. This brand represents Valtellina Casera written preceded by a stylized cheese shape, missing a segment in which the profile of a mountain is inserted.
b) the brand in focus, represented below, and affixed after the 70th day from the date of production, consists, in the lower part, of a semicircle characterized by a border like a moon interrupted by a very soft open "V", at the bottom the interior of which is positioned a third graphic element depicting an equilateral triangle, inverted, with concave oblique sides. An illustration that figuratively represents a stylized form of cheese, where the element of the open "V" interrupts the continuity of the circle, separating a segment that symbolically represents the characteristic slice of cheese. This trademark is an integral part of this disciplinary and is reserved for forms produced for no less than seventy days and which meet the requirements set by this specification.