Parmigiano-Reggiano or Parmesan is considered the "king of cheeses" (or one of them), and for good reason. True Parmesan is a PDO, or protected designation of origin. PDO status means the entire product is traditionally and completely made in a specific area. It's also protected by the Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese Consortium, which sets and enforces the standards to maintain the PDO designation.
The term "Parmesan" is legally allowed to be used outside the European Union for similar kinds, but Parmigiano-Reggiano is the full Italian name for this popular cheese.
Parmigiano-Reggiano is a hard cheese made from unpasteurized milk from cows that are fed only grass or hay. The manufacturing process is precise and long, involving brine baths, aging, and weekly cleaning and turning of the wheels. The wheels are aged for a minimum of 12 months. Wheels aged for 18 — 24 months are referred to as Vecchio, or Old, and Stravecchio, or Extra-Old, for those aged 24 — 36 months.
Between 2013 and 2015, 2039 wheels of Parmigiano-Reggiano were stolen by organized crime gangs. The collective value of the cheese was $875,000! No wonder it's so popular!
Find fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano at South Country Co-op Food Centres so you can make these delicious recipes!
Total Time: 10 min
Prep: 5 min
Cook: 5 min
Yield: 8 to 10 crisps
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
- Pour a heaping tablespoon of Parmesan onto a silicone or parchment lined baking sheet and lightly pat down. A silicone baking sheet is highly recommended.
- Repeat with the remaining cheese, spacing the spoonful about a 1/2 inch apart.
- Bake for 3 to 5 minutes or until golden and crisp. Cool & serve.
- Variations: Sprinkle with Basil, Garlic Powder or Black Pepper
Chive Parmesan Dip
- 1 lb Parmesan Reggiano Cheese block
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tsp chopped chives
- 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 baguette to make crostini (an Italian appetizer consisting of small slices of grilled or toasted bread and toppings)
For the parmesan dip:
- Mix all ingredients (without the baguette) in a food processor and pulse until creamy.
- Add more olive oil for a thinner consistency, or more cheese to make it thicker.
- Slice the baguette into 1/2" slices.
- Brush each side with olive oil and sprinkle a touch of salt on each.
- Put on a baking sheet and bake at 350 for about 10 minutes.
- Flip the crostini halfway through the baking process.
- Let cool and enjoy with the parmesan dip.
Parm, Pears & Ham Appy
- 24 pear slices, thinly cut
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 100 g Parmesan petals (Use a cheese plane or vegetable peeler to shave off ribbons, or petals, and serve over salads. The large surface area of the ribbons gives high flavor impact)
- 150 g prosciutto cut into thin strips
- 2 Tbsp liquid honey
- Baguette cut into 12 thin slices
- Lightly brush baguette slices with olive oil
- Arrange 2 slices of pear to fill each baguette
- Fold prosciutto slices on pear
- Sprinkle parmesan petals on top of each
- Drizzle with honey
Parmesan Onion Appetizer Squares
Total Time: 25 min
Prep: 5 min
Cook: 20 min
- 1½ cups mayonnaise
- 1½ cup Parmesan cheese grated or shredded
- 3 Tbsp grated onion
- ½ tsp salt
- Pinch black pepper
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp granulated sugar
- 30 baguette slices or cocktail bread
- Preheat the oven to 400
- Mix the first 8 ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl
- Spread approximately 1 tablespoon of the parmesan mixture evenly onto the bread and place on a baking sheet
- Bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until the squares are golden in color
- Remove and serve hot, warm, or at room temperature
Preparation: 17 minutes
Storage: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
- 2 lbs brown mushrooms, washed & stems removed
- 1.5 cups Parmesan cheese, grated
- 3/4 tsp salt
- Ground black pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 450 °F.
- On a large baking sheet, place mushroom caps tightly packed and touching, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Top with parmesan cheese, concentrating on filling up the cavities.
- Bake for 15 minutes or until mushrooms are golden on the outside and cheese has melted.
- Serve hot.