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Learn about the origins of smoked scamorza, how it’s prepared, and its nutritional values

scamorza affumicata
Table of Contents

Smoked scamorza is an Italian stretched curd cheese known for its distinctive flavor and stringy texture. Its origins are found in southern Italy, particularly in the regions of Campania, Puglia, Basilicata and Molise.

Traditionally, scamorza is made using cow’s milk, but there are variants with sheep’s or buffalo’s milk.

The process begins with the curdling of the milk, followed by the formation of the curd, which is then cut into small pieces and processed until the typical stringy consistency is obtained. After being shaped into a ball or pear, scamorza cheese is immersed in brine and, finally, smoked.

Smoking gives scamorza cheese its characteristic aroma and flavor. This process is traditionally carried out using beech or oak wood, which gives the cheese a golden color and a unique taste.

Smoked scamorza is extremely versatile in the kitchen, perfect for au gratin, used in sandwiches, salads, appetizers, pizzas, and even enjoyed on its own in slices.

Today, smoked scamorza is appreciated not only in Italy but all over the world, thanks to its unique flavor and its multiple culinary applications.

It is a cheese that embodies centuries of history and tradition, becoming an essential ingredient for cheese lovers.

Preparation of smoked scamorza cheese

Let’s take a look at the main stages of processing smoked scamorza:

  1. Curdling and curd formation:
    • The production process begins with the curdling of the milk.
    • The curd is cooked at about 42°C by adding hot water.
    • After cooking, the curd is placed on a table, cut by hand into planks and left to rest until the next day at a temperature of about 27°C.
  2. Pasta processing:
    • The next day, the dough is cut into lozenges and kneaded by hand or in stretchers.
    • Water is added to the pasta at a temperature of about 85°C.
    • The resulting paste is kneaded until it is given an ovoid shape.
  3. Cooling & Brine:
    • The resulting scamorza cheese is cooled and hardened in running water.
    • Subsequently, the product is immersed in brine for the salting phase for about half an hour.
  4. Smoking:
    • Finally, the product is hung inside some smokehouses for about 15 minutes at 40-50°C.
    • This gives the smoked scamorza the characteristic smokiness given by the fumes of damp straw or wood shavings.

Smoked scamorza is a cheese with a rich and intense taste, very versatile in the kitchen. It is perfect for creating many classic or original dishes, such as pasta dishes, risottos, stuffed vegetables, casseroles, meatballs and skewers.

In addition, it is ideal for tasty savory pies and exquisite gourmet pizzas, with which you can unleash all your creativity in the search for appetizing combinations.

The authenticity of its taste depends on the quality of the raw materials used, so it is important to choose scamorza made only from the best milk and high-quality raw materials.

Recipes with smoked scamorza cheese

• Recipe for focaccia stuffed with smoked scamorza cheese

Here is a detailed recipe for a delicious focaccia stuffed with smoked scamorza cheese:

Ingredients:

  • 500g bread flour
  • 300ml lukewarm water
  • 7g dry brewer’s yeast
  • 10g salt
  • 30ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 200g smoked scamorza cheese
  • 150g cherry tomatoes
  • Fresh basil to taste
  • Coarse salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste

Preparation:

  1. In a large bowl, mix the flour with the dry brewer’s yeast.
  2. Add the lukewarm water and start kneading until smooth.
  3. Stir in the salt and extra virgin olive oil, then transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead it for about 10 minutes.
  4. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover it with a damp cloth, and let it rise in a warm place for 1-2 hours or until doubled in volume.
  5. Once risen, roll out the dough into an oiled baking dish, creating a slightly raised edge.
  6. Cut the smoked scamorza cheese into slices and place them on the dough.
  7. Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and place them on top of the scamorza cheese.
  8. Add the chopped fresh basil, a pinch of coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  9. Let the dough rest for another 15 minutes while the oven pre-heats to 200°C.
  10. Bake the flatbread for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.
  11. Remove the focaccia from the oven and allow it to cool on a wire rack before serving.

Tips:

For a more intense flavor, you can add a few slices of spicy salami or cooked ham between the layers of scamorza cheese.

If you prefer, you can brush the surface of the flatbread with a little oil and minced garlic before baking for an extra flavor.

Learn about the origins of smoked scamorza, how it's prepared, and its nutritional values

• Recipe: Eggplant rolls with smoked scamorza cheese

Here is a detailed recipe for delicious eggplant rolls with smoked scamorza cheese:

Ingredients:

  • 2 large aubergines
  • 200g smoked scamorza cheese
  • 200g peeled tomatoes
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Fresh basil
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

  1. Cut the aubergines into longitudinal slices about 5mm thick.
  2. Grill the aubergine slices on a hot griddle until soft and lightly browned on both sides.
  3. Cut the smoked scamorza cheese into thin slices.
  4. On each slice of eggplant, place a slice of scamorza cheese and a few basil leaves, then roll up to form a roll.
  5. In a frying pan, sauté the garlic in the extra virgin olive oil, add the crushed peeled tomatoes and cook for about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Place the aubergine rolls in a baking dish, pour over the tomato sauce and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 15 minutes.
  7. Serve the rolls hot, garnished with fresh basil leaves.

Recommendations:

For a crunchy touch, add some breadcrumbs and grated Parmesan cheese on top of the rolls before baking.

Accompany the rolls with a fresh green salad or crusty bread.

Nutritional values

Smoked scamorza is a semi-fresh stretched curd cheese, typical of the areas of southern Italy. It is produced in two versions: white or smoked. Both variants are made from cow’s milk and have a stringy texture. Let’s take a look at the nutritional values of smoked white scamorza:

  • Calories: A 300-gram scamorza contains about 990 calories.
  • Protein: Scamorza is rich in protein, with almost 30% of its content.
  • Fat: It contains zero saturated fat and has a high protein content. This makes it an excellent source of energy.
  • Vitamins: Scamorza contains vitamin A and vitamin E.
  • Minerals: It is rich in calcium, phosphorus, mineral salts and zinc.

Smoked white scamorza cheese is versatile in the kitchen. It can be eaten simply sliced, raw or sautéed. In addition, it is perfect for enriching omelettes, baked pasta, meat, vegetables or for preparing tasty and stringy fillings. If you want to buy scamorza cheese directly from the dairy, you can order online and receive it fresh within 24 hours.

Smoked scamorza cheese in a pan

Pan-smoked scamorza is a simple but extremely tasty dish, which enhances the strong flavor and stringy texture of this cheese. To prepare smoked scamorza cheese in a pan, start by heating a non-stick pan over high heat for at least 5 minutes, it is important that the pan is very hot.

Cut the scamorza cheese into slices that are not too thin, season with salt and pepper, and then transfer to a pan. The scamorza cheese should be cooked for about 5 minutes, then turn off the heat and serve hot, perhaps accompanied by fresh lettuce leaves as a side dish, with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and a sprinkling of salt.

This cheese, thanks to its ability to melt quickly, becomes the protagonist of quick and delicious recipes. You can enrich the dish with ingredients such as cooked ham, grilled vegetables or spices to give a personal and unique touch to each preparation.

Pan-smoked scamorza can be served as an appetizer, main course , or as a main ingredient in a fancier recipe. Its versatility makes it perfect for a casual dinner with friends or a family meal during the week.