This deliciously creamy cheese, pronounced boor-RAH-tah, is a specialty of Southern Italy, especially the regions of Puglia, Campania, and Basilicata. Burrata was invented in Andria at the beginning of the 20th century. Traditionally made from buffalo's milk, today most burrata is made from cow's milk.
Classified as a "spun" or "pulled curd" cheese, burrata's uniqueness lies in the buttery texture of the cheese's center: "Burro" means butter in Italian.
The outside of these decadent balls is a wrapped skin made from stretched sheets of mozzarella paste. The mozzarella paste is stretched into rectangles
3 x 5-inches and air is blown into it to make a sac.This gives the exterior a soft, springy texture. The soft, buttery center is made from fresh cream and
shredded pieces of mozzarella called stracciatella. The sac is then tied with a blade of grass and has the shape of a chubby pear.. When you bite or cut
into burrata, the cream oozes out irresistibly. It is as though you are tasting three different textures and flavors all at once - the sweetness of the cream, the
shedded mozzarella with a touch of acidity, and the more complex and cheesy outer layer.
Burrata is highly perishable and should be eaten as soon as possible after purchase. It will keep for only a few days in the refrigerator. You can find
burrata wrapped in the protective leaves of asfodelo, which is an herb-like plant similar to leeks. The leaves will indicate the freshness of the cheese; as long as the outer wrapping stays green the cheese within is still fresh. Burrata has become popular in recent years and it can be found in many cheese shops and even local supermarkets. Most commonly it is sold in plastic containers surrounded by whey or water.
Traditionally, burrata is cut in half and served in a deep plate. Serve burrata paired with fresh tomatoes, fragrant basil, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Its marvelous liquid center can be scooped up with slices of crusty bread and accompanied by a bottle of wine. Try tossing burrata in pasta or serving on a fresh green salad.
Burrata Salad Recipe >>
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic
12 baguette slices
8 ounces burrata, cut into small pieces
Fresh basil leaves
In a mini food processor, mix olives, oil, vinegar, and garlic. Spread bread with olive mixture. Toast on baking sheet for 10 minutes. Top with burrata and garnish with basil Season wtih salt and pepper.
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MAKE CHEESE AT HOME
Claudia Lucero shows step by step―with every step photographed―exactly how to make sixteen fresh cheeses at home, using easily available ingredients and tools, in an hour or less. The approach is basic and based on thousands of years of cheesemaking wisdom.