Hide and Seek

Looking for a hidden treasure? Seek out this tasty Italian table cheese. Brenta Stagionato is a cheese that I am unwrapping and introducing to you. It is a cheese born from the ancient cheesemaking tradition of Northeastern Italy.  This cheese takes its name from the river Brenta that flows through Trentino Alto-Adige and the Veneto region to the Adriatic sea. The cow’s milk is gathered locally from the Italian Alps where there is an exceptional array of grasses for grazing.

I love the full-bodied (yet not overpowering) flavor.  It is deliciously sweet, creamy, nutty and herbaceous, with a nice fresh milk flavor.  It is somewhat similar to a Piave in flavor.  Brenta is aged for a minimum of two months. Its texture is semi-firm to firm.  I prepared this fresh recipe below to compliment my Brenta and thoroughly enjoyed it with a glass of Mazzei Ser Lap Chianti Classico Riserva 2008-delizioso!

Ingredients:

2 pounds large heirloom tomatoes—cored, halved lengthwise and thickly sliced into half-moons

  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 pounds escarole, inner leaves only, torn into bite-size pieces
  • 3 cups Brenta cheese shavings
  1. On a platter, season the tomatoes with salt and pepper. Drizzle with 1/4 cup of the oil; toss. Let stand for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the remaining 1/4 cup of oil and the lemon juice. Add the escarole, season with salt and pepper and toss. Mound the escarole on a platter and top with the tomatoes and any accumulated juices. Scatter the cheese shavings on top and serve.

Have a Happy and Safe Fourth of July:-)

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About lmaybaum

Bottle King's resident Cheese Queen

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