Grana Padano Cheese PDO
Grana Padano Protection Consortium
Grana Padano is made exclusively from raw Italian milk from the production area, which is partially skimmed by natural surface skimming. The milk is produced by cows milked only twice daily and fed according to specific rules. The milk is processed in traditional, cone-shaped copper-lined cauldrons
Natural whey starter is added to the milk in the cauldron, then heated to a temperature of 31-33 C° and rennet is added to induce coagulation.
The cheese mass settles at the bottom of the cauldron and is left to rest so that it firms up. Finally, the operators, using a wooden shovel and a linen cloth ('schiavino'), lift it from inside the cauldron and cut it into two equal parts, called “twin wheels”.
Marks of Origin
At this point, each new wheel is enclosed in a cylindrical mold known as a "fascera", once made of wood and today of a suitable plastic material. This is tightly sealed and pressed by a heavy disk of the same material. After about 12 hours of "shaping", another plastic band is placed between the mold and the side of the wheel, which is embossed with the marks of origin: the four-leaf clover stamped with the serial number of the dairy, the abbreviation for the province and the month and year of production, and small diamond-shaped lozenges that show, dotted inside them, alternately the words "GRANA" and "PADANO".
The production area of Grana Padano cheese stretches along the entire Po Valley (Pianura Padana) and includes 32 provinces from Piedmont to Veneto, from the province of Trento to Piacenza. Actual production is now concentrated in 13 provinces.
History tells us that Grana Padano, this grainy cheese from the Po Valley, was created around 1135 within the historic stone walls of the Abbey of Chiaravalle. The monks devised a special process, in special cauldrons inside the monastery, which can as such be considered the first dairies, to make a hard cheese that would improve with time as it matured. The monks called it caseus vetus, old cheese. The people, who were not familiar with Latin, gave it another name, derived from the cheese's compact, but granular appearance. Thus, the name “formai de grana” (grainy cheese), or more simply “grana”, was created.
Details of the product
Ingredients: milk, salt, rennet, lysozyme from egg white
Shape: cylindrical, heel slightly convex or almost straight, flat faces, slightly rimmed
Dimension: Diameter from 35 to 45 cm; height from 18 to 25 cm with variations, for both, more or less, depending on the technical production process.
Weight: from 24 to 40 kg per wheel
Grana Padano: a high nutritional value food
What makes Grana Padano an all-round food favourable to the well-being and health of children, adolescents, pregnant women, athletes and the elderly is its excellent ratio of energy value to the quality and quantity of nutrients it contains. Being a semi-fat cheese, its energy value is lower than that of many commonly consumed foods that provide far fewer nutrients. Grana Padano is an excellent natural food, providing a large proportion of the substances that humans need.
To make 1 kg of Grana Padano requires 15 litres of good, fresh, partially skimmed milk only from the Po Valley. It is therefore a milk concentrate with proteins of high biological value for the muscles, many vitamins, including those of the B group, and antioxidants such as zinc and vitamin A that protect cells from free radicals.
Furthermore, it is especially a great source of calcium: 50 g of Grana Padano is enough to provide 600 milligrams of calcium (50% of the daily amount needed from adolescents to the elderly). Getting this amount is easy, just think that a tablespoon of grated Grana Padano weighs about 10 g.
CLAL focus on: Grana Padano PDO Cheese
- Grana Padano PDO
- Consorzio Tutela GRANA PADANO
- Desenzano del Garda (BS), Italy
- Establishment year:
- N. consortium members:
- Grana Padano PDO
What makes Grana Padano an all-round food favourable to the well-being and health of children, adolescents, pregnant women, athletes and the elderly is its excellent ratio of energy value to the quality and quantity of nutrients it contains.