When it comes to cheese, there are many varieties and types available in the market. Parmigiano Reggiano and Parmesan cheese are two of the most popular types of cheese among food lovers.
However, many people often get confused between both of these types of cheese. In this article, we will discuss whether Parmigiano Reggiano and Parmesan cheese are the same or not.
What is Parmigiano Reggiano
Parmigiano Reggiano is a type of hard, granular Italian cheese that is made from cow’s milk. It is produced exclusively in certain regions of Italy, including Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Bologna, and Mantua.
It has a pale-yellow color and a sharp, nutty flavor that intensifies with age. Parmigiano Reggiano is known for its texture and versatility and is commonly used as a grating cheese.
What is Parmesan Cheese
Parmesan cheese is a term used to refer to a family of hard Italian cheeses that are similar to Parmigiano Reggiano but not exactly the same. The term “Parmesan” is often used interchangeably with “Parmigiano Reggiano,” but technically speaking, they are not the same thing.
Differences between Parmigiano Reggiano and Parmesan Cheese
The main difference between Parmigiano Reggiano and Parmesan cheese lies in their place of origin and production process. While both cheeses are made from cow’s milk using similar techniques, only cheeses produced in certain regions of Italy can be labeled as “Parmigiano Reggiano.”
- Production: Parmigiano Reggiano is made in a specific region of Italy using traditional methods, while Parmesan cheese can be made anywhere using similar techniques.
- Age: Parmigiano Reggiano is aged for at least 12 months, while Parmesan cheese is often aged for a shorter period.
- Flavor: Parmigiano Reggiano has a more complex and nutty flavor than Parmesan cheese.
Similarities between Parmigiano Reggiano and Parmesan Cheese
Despite their differences, both cheeses share many similarities:
- Texture: Both cheeses have a hard, granular texture that makes them ideal for grating over pasta or salads.
- Taste: While the flavor of both cheeses differs slightly, they both have a savory and nutty taste that complements many dishes.
- Versatility: Both cheeses are versatile and can be used in a variety of dishes, from pasta to salads to soups.
The Bottom Line
In conclusion, while both Parmigiano Reggiano and Parmesan cheese are hard Italian cheeses with similar texture and taste profiles, they are not the same thing. The main difference lies in their place of origin and production process.
So if you want true Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, make sure to look for the official stamp on the rind that certifies it as such.
No matter which one you choose, these delicious Italian cheeses are sure to add a burst of flavor to any dish!