Parco Nazionale dell'Appennino Lucano
Val d'Agri - Lagonegrese

Lucan Caciocavallo Podolico

This cheese is the cherry on top of an excellent regional production, which has at its basis a special milk: the one given by the Podolica, a fine breed which is bred wild in pastures rich of aromatic plants, bushes and undergrowth plants, which give the cheese its unique fragrance and flavour. Podolica cows adapt well to a rustic life but produce little milk, which is why the Caciocavallo Podolico cheese is a rare and esteemed product.

It is a cheese born from the pasta filata technique which the South has developed over the centuries in order to guarantee the preservation and healthiness of cow's milk cheeses. The curd, obtained through the heating and coagulation of the milk is cooked for a second time in order to make it elastic and easily handled.
The typically flask-shaped molds are left to age tied together in pairs with a rope resting "on horseback" (in Italian, a cavallo) on a ceiling beam. The cheese is left to mature for months, sometimes years: the more mature it is the more pronounced the flavours. It is made of a yellow paste which is rather elastic when the cheese is not particularly mature.
In the more aged products it is common to find cracks inside. These cracks are not a sign of a bad maturing process, but evidence of its long duration. The production of the Caciocavallo Podolico cheese occurs primarily during Spring and Summer, when there is more pasture for the animals and around the time they give birth. The cheese is a Slow Food Presidium.

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