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Hooked on Cheese: Burrata

Hooked on Cheese: Burrata


If you ever wanted to know some key Italian cheesemaking terms, today’s your lucky day. The cheese I’m discussing this week is the melt-in-your-mouth delicacy known as burrata (“buttered” in Italian), and there are plenty of terms in italiano that will help you talk about this formaggio (cheese) like a pro!

If you like fresh mozzarella (from mozzare, “to cut off”), you will love burrata. Burrata is comprised of an interior pouch of fresh cream (panna) and mozzarella curds, or ritagli, the “rags” or “scraps” that are leftover from mozzarella production, that have been wrapped in a layer of pasta filata, the “spun paste” strings that are pulled to make solid mozzarella. When it is cut open, particularly fresh burrata will ooze out the unpulled curds and cream. Burrata was originally produced in the Apulia region in southern Italy and, like mozzarella, was traditionally made using the milk of water buffalo (bufala) but is now predominantly made from cow’s milk (known as fior di latte). As with fresh mozzarella, it’s always best to seek the freshest and softest burrata available. In Europe, burrata is often served wrapped in a green leaf of the Italian asphodel (asfodelo) plant to indicate supreme freshness.

Now that you know some of the terms for burrata production, only one question remains: how do you serve it? Honestly, you can serve burrata pretty much exactly the way you would serve fresh mozzarella. The most popular way to enjoy it: mixed with seasonal tomatoes, fresh basil, and great quality olive oil as a variation on insalata caprese. Another method: my favorite New York pizza place makes a pie with a blistered crust, light tomato sauce, garlic, and olive oil, then shreds burrata over the cooked pie, allowing it to melt only slightly, thus retaining its creamy goodness. At the end of the day though, I must admit my absolute favorite way to serve burrata is as simple as can be: taken fresh from the cheesemaker’s hands and accompanied by warm, rustic baked bread.

While it is not always easy to find fresh burrata in America, the packed varieties that can be found at specialty cheese shops are still a tasty treat (BelGioioso is the most commonly found brand). You can also order some delicious burrate online from specialty cheesemakers such as Murray’s Cheese, but if at all possible I recommend seeking a cheesemaker you can visit in person for the freshest burrata available. Buon appetito!

You can follow Raymond's cheese adventures on Facebook, Twitter and his website. Additional reporting by Madeleine James.


Burrata recipes

We love fresh, creamy burrata in hearty pasta dishes, colourful salads or on a chunky bruschetta. Discover our favourite cheesy Italian recipes.

Tomato, burrata & broad bean salad

Chop up tomatoes, toss with salt, top with creamy burrata and slather with a broad bean-flecked salsa verde to make this simple yet super-tasty salad

Grilled nectarine & burrata salad

Showcase nectarines at their best in the springtime with a stunning salad. With crunchy candied pecans and creamy burrata, it's full of texture

Burrata bruschetta

Try a new twist on bruschetta, topped with burrata, broad beans, sugar snap peas, radish, mint and chilli. It makes a fab lunch or starter for a dinner party

Sicilian-style artichoke hearts with burrata

Make the most of globe artichokes with luscious, creamy burrata and a delicate saffron, honey and white balsamic dressing

Carrot, chicory & mandarin salad with burrata & walnuts

Celebrate carrots with this fab salad that combines them with chicory, mandarin, burrata and walnuts to give lots of different colours, textures and flavours

Spaghetti with fresh tomato sauce

Bashing tomatoes, chilli, sugar and shallots together in a pestle and mortar helps to bring out the flavours for a delicious no-cook pasta sauce. Make it more indulgent with creamy burrata cheese

Pea & burrata salad with preserved lemon salsa

Add burrata to our pea and broad bean salad to introduce a delicate, soft and buttery element to the plate. A lemon dressing really cuts through the richness


What Is Burrata?

For the uninitiated, burrata is an Italian cow’s milk cheese that is basically a combination of mozzarella and cream.

You can think of it like a pouch. The outside is a thin wall of solid cheese, and the inside is where the cream is combined with the mozzarella.

The top of the pouch is secured with a neat little knot.

When you cut into burrata, the creamy inside will slowly come out. The flavor is rich and milky. It’s practically begging to be spooned onto bread or have bread dunked into it to sop up all that goodness.


Burrata recipes

Burrata is a member of the pasta filata (spun paste) cheese family, to which mozzarella also belongs. A fresh cheese made from a mix of both mozzarella and cream, it has fairly recent beginnings in 1920s Puglia, a region renowned for sheep farming and agriculture. The outside of the cheese consists of a pasta filata curd made from buffalo or cow's milk, and when cut open reveals a buttery, creamy panna (milk) containing soft, stringy pieces of mozzarella. Literally translated as ‘buttered’, burrata is traditionally sold wrapped within leaves of asphodel which also act as an indicator of the cheese’s freshness – the greener the better.

Whether encased within a pasta parcel or adorning a seafood starter, this collection of burrata recipes highlights its fantastic versatility as an ingredient. Alessandro Gavagna uses a combination of burrata and mint to create a beautifully fresh filling for his Agnolotti pasta dish. Salvatore Elefante, on the other hand, uses its distinctive creaminess to offset the tartness of tomato in his Tagliolini with tuna, aubergine cream and burrata recipe. Swapping pasta for pastry, Teresa Buongiorno wraps burrata in Kataifi pastry in her vibrant burrata starter recipe. The subtle flavours of burrata also pair beautifully with seafood, as exemplified in Gaetano Trovato’s scallop recipe and the Cerea Brothers’ Red prawns, tomato and basil seafood starter.


How to Make Burrata

If you’ve made mozzarella before, it’s time to elevate your cheese game and try your hand(s) at burrata. If you’ve never made mozzarella, well, we’re starting you on the varsity squad here by showing you how to make an Italian delight that will tip your taste buds into a creamy coma of happiness. Burrata, which means “buttery” in Italian, is mozzarella’s cheesy cousin externally, their shape, texture, and color are identical. But while mozzarella’s texture is uniform throughout, burrata has a more liquid, velvety inside, the result of heavy cream being mixed with the curds. With zero aging time, this Italian cheese is certainly one of the quickest to make, and it is also one of the easiest for home cooks to master.

You will need to plan ahead to find your curds (noted in our recipe), then burrata success is assured by following these three essential tips: First, don’t overmix either the cheese or the filling—lest the outer layer become too tough and the inner turn to butter. Second, go high fat for a richer, more robust end product. Lastly, experiment a bit—herbs or truffle oil add additional flavor to that luscious inner cream.

As for how to use your scrumptious orb, slicing it over homemade pizza or smearing on crostini for satisfying creamy/crunchy contrast are no-brainers. But don’t stop there add dimension to salads, fresh pastas, or roasted vegetables.


Broccoli Rabe Burrata Pizza

Are you a basic pizza person? You know, cheese, pepperoni, sausage? Time to up your game with this specialty pizza. Broccoli rabe sauteed with olive oil forms the “sauce” for this pizza. Add in some kalamata olives, garlic, basil, pepperoni, and parmesan cheese, and you get a fabulous upgrade to your standard pizza. But wait! There’s more. Burrata cheese melted over everything lifts this pizza over the top! This pizza may be your new favorite.

If you’re looking for a protein-packed meal that is incredibly easy and fast, look no further! This recipe feeds two people in about 20 minutes making it perfect for any weeknight dinner or lunch.


Strawberry & Cream Croissant French Toast For Your Weekend Brunch

Those with a creative eye know firsthand that inspiration is all around us. Whether you're energized by the earth tones of nature, a color-filled walk through a local farmer's market, or even by a quick scroll through Instagram, you never know what might spark a new creative project.

In the spirit of inspiring your next masterpiece, we're excited to partner with Bounty to fuel the next generation of artists and designers forward by launching a national design competition. We're calling on graphic designers to apply for a chance to see their work featured on a new Brit + Co and Bounty paper towel collection, set to launch in 2022.

Aside from the incredible exposure of having your illustrations on paper towels that'll be in stores across America next year, you'll also receive $5,000 for your art a scholarship for Selfmade, our 10-week entrepreneurship accelerator to take your design career to the next level (valued at $2,000) and a stand alone feature on Brit + Co spotlighting your artistry as a creator.

The Creatively You Design Competition launches Friday, May 21, 2021 and will be accepting submissions through Monday, June 7, 2021.

APPLY NOW

Who Should Apply: Women-identifying graphic designers and illustrators. (Due to medium limitations, we're not currently accepting design submissions from photographers or painters.)

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How To Enter: Apply here, where you'll be asked to submit 2x original design files you own the rights to for consideration. Acceptable file formats include: .PNG, .JPG, .GIF, .SVG, .PSD, and .TIFF. Max file size 5GB. We'll also ask about your design inspiration and your personal info so we can keep in touch.

Artist Selection Process: Panelists from Brit + Co and P&G Bounty's creative teams will judge the submissions and select 50 finalists on June 11, 2021 who will receive a Selfmade scholarship for our summer 2021 session. Then, up to 8 artists will be selected from the finalists and notified on June 18, 2021. The chosen designers will be announced publicly in 2022 ahead of the product launch.

For any outstanding contest Qs, please see our main competition page. Good luck & happy creating!


Grilled Tomatoes with Burrata Cheese

Grilled tomatoes with burrata cheese are a yummy twist on caprese salad. The tomatoes turn tender and melt in your mouth with the burrata!

Ingredients

  • 1 large beefsteak tomato, cut into thirds, crosswise (or 2 medium tomatoes, halved, crosswise, for 4 servings)
  • 1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil for brushing on tomato slices, PLUS 1 tablespoons for vinaigrette
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon spicy mustard
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 ball of burrata cheese
  • Chopped basil to garnish

Instructions

    1. Prepare the tomatoes: Heat the grill to medium-high. If using a large beefsteak tomato, cut into thirds, crosswise (from side to side, not from top to bottom), so each slice is roughly 3/4-inch in height. If using medium size tomatoes, halve crosswise (from side to side, not from top to bottom). Brush sliced tomatoes with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
    2. Make the dressing: In a small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon olive oil, balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, and spicy mustard. Season with salt and pepper and stir until well combined. Set aside.
    3. Grill and serve: After grill is heated, place tomatoes cut-side down over the heat and close lid and grill for about three to five minutes per side. Slices should turn tender (but not too soft) with grill marks. Remove slices from grill and plate with burrata cheese. Drizzle vinaigrette over top of tomatoes and cheese and garnish with chopped basil.

    Notes

    Net carbs of alternate serving sizes:

    • 1 beefsteak tomato (400g) split into 3 servings is about 5.6 net carbs.
    • 2 medium tomatoes (125g each) split into 4 servings is about 4.8 net carbs.
    • 2 beefsteak tomatoes (400g each) split into 4 servings is about 6.9 net carbs.

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    Burrata recipes

    Burrata, meaning ‘buttered’ in Italian, is a soft cheese made from mozzarella and cream – think a snowy white cheese sack filled with silky, buttery goodness. With its subtle flavour and soft, creamy texture burrata makes the perfect addition to crisp summer salads – just take care to dress it simply to let its smooth richness shine through.

    This collection of burrata recipes contains some fantastic inspiration for serving this delicious, increasingly popular cheese. Shaun Hill's Burrata with chickpea fritters recipe makes a fantastic summer salad dish, while Xavier Boyer's Burrata salad with beetroot and radishes is a simple starter recipe which looks both striking and sophisticated on the plate – perfect for impressing guests with minimum stress. For a wonderful midweek dinner try Georgina Fuggle's Spinach, lemon and garlic penne rigate recipe, where the pasta is tossed through egg yolk and sprinkled generously with torn pieces of burrata.


    Burrata Bolognese

    While on the New York Dairy Tour, I had the chance to try a number of delicious recipes involving dairy. For today’s recipe, I recreated a dish that I ordered at a restaurant out in the Finger Lakes. Burrata Bolognese. If you haven’t tried burrata yet, then stop reading this post now. Run (don’t walk!) to the store and get some burrata. Then come back and make this Burrata Bolognese.

    Burrata is closely related to mozzarella. We had the chance to make mozzarella on the trip, and I am definitely planning on trying that one here at home again. As we learned, if you can make mozzarella, then you can make burrata. Burrata is simply a pouch of mozzarella filled with a bit of cream and scraps of leftover mozzarella. The ball is pinched closed, and there you have it. Burrata. The result? When you slice into that ball of cheese, the creamy filling slowly oozes out…if you can wait that long!

    This Burrata Bolognese recipe features a classic bolognese sauce served over short pasta. The bolognese simmers for several hours on the stovetop, and I can assure you that your house will smell amazing once it’s done! Spoon several ladles of that sauce over hot pasta and top it with a ball of burrata cheese. Not only is this Burrata Bolognese delicious, but it’s impressive to serve to company. In fact, we put this recipe on our short list of options to make when we need a fun dinner for friends or family.

    I hope you enjoy this Burrata Bolognese as much as we do! And if you ever get the chance to give a cow flowers, do it. She deserves ’em!

    Did you make this Burrata Bolognese at home? Leave a comment! Or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog).

    Looking for other delicious, cheesy recipes? Try some of these favorites:


    Watch the video: JAMIES SPECIALS. Puglian Burrata Bruschetta. Jamies Italian