Cupped in my palm, it wobbled like a breast, a Marie Antoinette of a breast, all milky white and delicate. This was Burrata, a filled Mozzarella that Rog and I had trekked across Melbourne to find. I was in cheese geek heaven, for in my possession was a rare and fabled fresh cheese, unseen in Wellington. Another cheese notch on my bed post.
I carefully brought it back to the hotel and created a bed of salad ingredients on which to place it. Though I had no olive oil to anoint this lovely treasure, it lay white and prone on its bed.
Break open a Burrata (pronounce boor-RAH-ta) and it spills forth its heavenly mixture of cream and shredded mozzarella called Stracciatella. I lovingly mopped them up with crusty bread and my summery salad. The stringy walls of Mozzarella contain glossy rich cream, it made a surprisingly refreshing dressing for the piquancy of rocket and crunch of red pepper.
Burrata is not for the dieting. It’s a pimped-up Mozzarella with a short shelf life which has recently become quite the thing in London and LA. A wonderfully rarified treat.
In Italy Burrata is made in Puglia in the south, but in Melbourne it was made by the lovely ladies in the La Latteria ‘Mozzarella laboratory’ in Carlton.
La Latteria – Mozzarella laboratory, milk & yoghurt
They make Mozzarella daily in the store, and produce a wonderful array of young cheeses, including a Scamorza Affumicata aka Baby Provolina – a smoked cheese similar in texture to Provolone. Ours was a Diavoletti – a little devil, filled with an olive stuffed with fresh chilli. The rich smokey flavours and elastic texture of this little devil a fitting counterpoint to the fresh, bright liquidity of the Burrata.
La Lattaria was worth the tram ride. I loved talking with the ladies about cheese, and was delighted at how curious they were about New Zealand’s raw milk and cheese laws.
I hadn’t realized how much we are at the vanguard of cheese nations outside Europe. Both Australia and the US have limiting regulations that prevent the sale and manufacture of raw milk cheeses.
This is the second time in the last few weeks I’ve been asked about raw milk cheese. I got a great question from my cheesey reader Moerangi, so if you’re curious about any aspect of raw milk cheese, drop me a line, I’m going to research and write a series of posts about it.
Got a cheesey question? Let me help.