This Italian ingredient will turn you into a top chef at home
Sponsored: Grana Padano cheese brings the true taste of Italy to the UAE…
Take a peek inside the kitchen of any Italian chef, and you’re likely to find a few staple ingredients. Among the extra virgin olive oil, tomatoes and balsamic vinegar, there’s one cheese that most will agree is essential: Grana Padano.
Whether it’s grated over pasta, shaved into a salad, or served on a cheese board, this versatile hard cheese adds an instant flavour boost to your favourite Italian dishes.
With our passion for quality ingredients here in the UAE, it’s little wonder Grana Padano has become a popular choice for food lovers in Dubai and beyond. Such is our love affair with Grana Padano, that some Dubai restaurants even toss freshly cooked pasta in huge wheels of the cheese.
What makes Grana Padano so special?
Hailing from Northern Italy, Grana Padano owes its name to its grainy texture ‘Grana’ and to ‘Padano’, which means “from the Po River Valley” (Pianura Padana, the production area). It was first made 1,000 years ago, when Benedictine monks discovered a way to preserve surplus milk.
To make one kilogram of Grana Padano cheese requires 15 litres of milk. Each wheel of cheese weighs around 38 kilograms and must mature for a minimum of nine months, before having to pass strict quality controls to receive the Grana Padano fire-brand. Wheels can then age to more than 24 months. The longer it is aged, the more intense the flavour and crumbly the texture become.
This hard, mellow cheese has become the world’s best-selling PDO cheese, found in household kitchens and top restaurants around the world.
Health benefits of Grana Padano
Grana Padano is a great source of vitamins and minerals, with 50g providing 60 per cent of an adult’s daily calcium needs. In fact, just 30g of Grana Padano contains the same nutritional value as 500ml of milk.
It’s easily digestible, so the whole family can enjoy it. And, thanks to the production process and long maturation, Grana Padano is lactose-free, which is a huge win for cheese lovers who usually have to abstain from dairy.
Shop for Grana Padano cheese in the UAE at Spinneys, Waitrose, Monoprix, Carrefour, Giant and Eataly Dubai Mall. For more information on Grana Padano, visit: granapadano.it