Pizza without cheese isn’t quite a pizza, is it? Cheese is like the glue that holds everything together. While mozzarella is a quintessential cheese for a pizza, there are many other types of cheeses that work wonderfully on a pizza, especially with certain ingredients. And even though most of us think of mozzarella as being a fairly basic cheese, there are many characteristics that make it quite special.
In today’s topping spotlight, we’re focusing on cheese, from the types and qualities of mozzarella to a few other types of cheeses that you should try on your pizza.
What is Mozzarella Cheese?
Mozzarella cheese originated from Naples, Italy and was made from the milk of water buffalo. You may have seen at some restaurants seeing pizzas with buffalo mozzarella. Buffalo mozzarella has a very milky flavor that is perfect for melty cheese pizzas, but mozzarella can be made from any type of milk. Buffalo mozzarella is still made in Naples using age-old techniques and can be imported to the US.
Mozzarella, regardless of the type of milk used, is made by combining the milk with a whey starter and a thickening agent called rennet. Curds are formed, which are then heated in water or whey until they become elastic. The curds are then formed into round mozzarella balls. This is known as fresh, or high-moisture mozzarella which is packed in water when it’s sold.
Low-moisture mozzarella is made by souring fresh mozzarella, which dries it out, giving it a saltier flavor and increases its shelf life. Both types of mozzarella can be used on pizza, but when using fresh mozzarella it needs to be dried out a bit before applying, otherwise the pizza crust might get soggy. Low-moisture mozzarella is often more elastic when heated, giving it that idyllic cheesy stretch.
Other Types of Cheeses to Try on Your Pizza
- Provolone: Provolone has a smokey flavor, but the strength of the flavor can vary depending on how long the cheese has aged. Provolone works well with chicken pesto pizzas or tomato basil.
- Cheddar: People love cheddar cheese because it has a sharp flavor that everyone can enjoy. Even though it’s not a common pizza topping, it works well with ingredients like ham and pineapple, and is often used on Mexican-style pizzas.
- Goat Cheese: If you’re feeling fancy, goat cheese adds a savory flavor to the pizza. It doesn’t melt like mozzarella, so try adding small pieces of the cheese to the pizza for explosions of cheese flavor. Goat cheese works well with caramelized onions or figs.
- Parmesan: You may already like to sprinkle parmesan on your cheese pizzas to give it an extra salty bite. Try sprinkling parmesan (it should never be baked) onto a Margherita, Sicilian, or Hawaiian pizza.
Try Dalia’s in West Covina For Fresh, Delicious Pizzas
Dalia’s has been serving up authentic pizzas in West Covina for years, and we love giving our guests a pizza that they crave again and again. Check out our menu to see what you’re in the mood for, and order pizza, pasta, subs, salads, and more online here.