The spinning of Provolone Valpadana P.D.O.: the procedure of the master cheesemakers for the realization of the shapes
The spinning of Provolone Valpadana is an extremely fascinating process, representative of this type of cheese.
It is the central part of the long production process, which also includes the cooking and subsequent maturing phases.
Thousands of cows, mainly Friesian breed, produce the milk that will first be collected and then processed in modern dairies. This is where the countless forms that distinguish the Provolone Valpadana cheese are born.
Milk is transformed by the ability of man and nature. Today, as in the past, milk becomes curdled and then cheese, through the use of rennet, a substance that already allowed the first shepherds to transform milk into cheese. Today, as in prehistoric times, rennet is an elaboration of nature that comes to us from animals, calves (for the mild type), lambs or kids (for the strong type), and that makes the milk coagulate.
The use of the serum graft for fermentation and curd breaking are the two fundamental steps
Before spinning: the serum graft
But even before using rennet and starting the spinning of Provolone Valpadana, cheesemakers enrich the milk with another powerful natural element, serum graft, which is whey coming from the previous day’s processing and left to rest one day and one night.
Whey is the liquid that remains in the boiler when the curd has solidified.
This substance is rich in microorganisms as precious as gold for the phenomena that will move in the future cheese, but also because it is these ferments that, transmitting day by day from one cheese to another, give it the stamp, hidden and intrinsic, but strong and characteristic of the place, the dairy and the cattle of the cowsheds that allocate their milk there.
Spinning and further processing
You make two curd breaks. But the most characteristic action of the millenary process that leads us to obtain Provolone Valpadana is the “spinning” (in fact, we speak of Provolone Valpadana P.D.O. as a spun paste cheese).
Specially created molds allow the dough to be modelled according to the shape you want: spherical, pear, cylindrical, salami, mandarin.
The salt will give the final touch to the future cheese, before resting in the maturing warehouses.