Mozzarella and burrata are two jewels of Italian dairy art. However, between these two fresh cheeses there is a big difference, which does not catch the eye until they are cut with a knife. The two have more than one aspect in common, but they are not the same.
Two cheeses with a different story
Both are fresh stretched curd cheeses, made from cow’s milk.
White, smooth on the outside and soft on the inside, mozzarella is the most loved fresh cheese by Italians. Original from Campania region, it is ultra-millennial diary tradition, renowned all over the world.
Burrata instead was born in Puglia region, only recently, in 1956. The creator of this marvellous cheese was Lorenzo Bianchino, cheesemaker in Andria.
The 1956 is a memorable year for all Italian food producers. The year of the tremendous snowfall that destroyed many cultivations all over the country. Moreover, the snowfall made difficult to transport dairy products. The ingenious dairyman had the idea of using the mozzarella stretched curd as a wrapping. So, to preserve the cream and the frayed mozzarella.
A star was born. Burrata is now the symbol not only of the city, but also of the region. Still one of the best-known dairy products in the world.
Mozzarella and burrata: into the difference
Some clues already emerge from the story on the difference between mozzarella and burrata.
To produce Mozzarella you need to start from the curd, by adding lactic ferments and rennet to the pasteurized cow’s milk.
The next steps are the cutting of the curd and the extraction of the whey. At this point the cheesemaker reduces the curd into strips and mixes in boiling water to make it “spin”. Then transforms it into mozzarella by cutting, manual or mechanical. The last phase is the cooling of the pieces in water.
To make Burrata the cheesemaker starts from the stretched curd of mozzarella, which acts as a wrapper. Inside a soft and creamy filling, stracciatella, a frayed spun dough mixed with cream. However, the shape is similar, mozzarella and burrata offer a completely different taste experience.
Mozzarella presents a delicate flavour and an elastic texture.
Burrata is more savoury presenting two quite different textures between the outside and the inside.
A matter of heart.
What distinguishes Burrata from a classic Mozzarella is the inside. In fact, while on the outside the two products may look quite similar, the inside reveals the difference.
The Burrata is like a mozzarella pocket with a soft heart, that is hand-frayed stretched curd and added with cream.
The inside of the Burrata is called Stracciatella, also available in cheese shops on its own, without the mozzarella wrapper that encloses it.
The flavour of the Burrata is very fatty but fresh. The outer shell is soft, it has a good classic hint of mozzarella of slightly sour fresh milk. While the creamy interior has a richer taste and recalls the taste of cream.
Not for diet, just for pleasure.
Burrata has a high caloric value, 450 kcal per 100 grams of product. Therefore better to consume it in small quantities. This delicious cheese be used to dress cold pasta summer salads, or plain topped with a drizzle of olive oil. Often comes with seasonal vegetables such as tomatoes and green leafy salads.
Burrata is considered a fresh cheese because it does not undergo a maturing process after its production. For this reason, it must be consumed within a couple of days, five at the most.
To recognize a good product, it is good to note at the time of cutting if the stracciatella inside comes out without problems from the outer casing. On the palate, it must be fresh and not acidic.
The ideal is to taste the Burrata by eating the two parts at the same time to combine the external season with the freshness of the interior.
How to pair Burrata and wine
Nice choice among Fiano di Avellino or Ribolla Gialla or Falanghina. White wines with nice flavour, freshness and minerality which balance sweetness and aroma of the recipe.
A Sicilian Chardonnay, capable of enhancing the freshness of the burrata and at the same time supporting its taste with an acid vein.
A sparkling wine is a good pair when the food is fatty. The bubbles helpful to clean the palate exalting freshness. A classic method cuvée is ideal.
The rosé version of Lagrein is bright salmon pink, fragrant and soft with delicate exotic notes and yellow peach. With a good structure, fresh taste, fine and in good balance with the soft structure.
It offers a good match, especially if the plate comes with tomatoes.