Shapes and sizes of a Valpadana-signed testSpun and transformed, wrapped and modelled. That's how the curd is worked today in the Provolone Valpadana PDO dairies. But in the past, between the mountains and plateaus of Southern Italy, provolone was a "prova" (test) cheese, used to see if curd "spinning" was suitable for producing the most important local cheese, the caciocavallo.
Spinning is still the crucial production moment for the Provolone Valpadana PDO: it comes out like a strip, which is then wrapped around itself, and finally shaped so no air bubbles remain inside. The shaping designates the form (spherical, pear, mandarin, cylindrical, pancetta, salami) and the size (from a few hundred grams to over 100kg), while the type of rennet (bovine or ovine) that was added to the milk determines whether the Provolone Valpadana PDO is "dolce" or "piccante".
The shaping of the "modella" (model) is so called because the rounded and sinuous forms of Provolone Valpadana PDO recall the animated curves of soft and sculpted girls. It is in fact a triumph for the picturesque and varied, but always unmistakably Provolone Valpadana PDO, form to parade the ripening or shipping warehouses.
This is the Provolone Valpadana PDO, aware of its past and proud of its status today as a versatile and modern cheese, that international gastronomes appreciate and lovers never do without: "dolce" or "piccante", fresh or aged, in mandarin or cylindrical shape.