Sunday, November 8, 2009

A cheesy masterpiece

One of the really wonderful things about Italy is the pride and enthusiasm they invest in perfectly ordinary things, like cheese. Just arrived from Scandinavia we stopped at a random supermarket along the road to shop for dinner. Salumi, cheese and meat were nicely packed and presented in coolers, but the Salumiere in charge remained close by in case we needed assistance.

- Dolce o piccante? A tavola o per cucinare? he said, when asked to recommend a cheese, and with the response that it should be more mild than strong and to serve at the table rather than to grate over pasta, he presented me with a Pecorino Sardo.

- Is it good, I asked stupidly and received a very reproachful look.

- Ma signora - รจ un capolavoro! he exclaimed with an expression that I have not seen since Beauvais Denmark featured ketchup commercials with a Spaniard, who called his tomato children 'Bambini'. It is certainly not very often a Danish shop assistant describes one of their cheeses as a masterpiece.

On the Italian Ministry of Agriculture homepage you can read more about the edible Italian masterpieces, and this short movie shows how Pecorino are made.

More cheese
Cheese vendors on the beach

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