Platter of Provolone

Like mozzarella, provolone is made by the pasta filata process. Slightly piquant when young with a firm texture that becomes granular with age, provolone is made with different cultures, resulting in a fuller, more assertive flavor than mozzarella. In earlier times, Italian cheesemakers heated curing rooms for provolone with wood fires, which imparted a slightly smoky flavor to the cheese. Today, Wisconsin cheesemakers produce both smoked and unsmoked provolone.



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Ivory to pale beige


Firm, becoming more granular with age


Full flavor that intensifies and sharpens with age


Top bruschetta with shredded provolone; bake until golden. Add diced tomatoes, toasted pine nuts and minced scallions; serve immediately. Use a mozzarella and provolone blend on pizzas, veal or chicken parmigianas, lasagnas and casseroles. Top crocks of flavorful chicken soup with provolone. Broil until the cheese melts and bubbles.


Beer: Stout, Pilsner, Pale Ale, Porter, Lager
Wine: Cabernet Sauvignon, Chianti, Chardonnay, Merlot, Beaujolais, Syrah/Shiraz
Spirit: Port

Performance Notes - Producers originally tied rope around provolone to hang it in the curing rooms. The rope also came in handy for transporting the cheese on horseback. In Italian, the plural of provolone is provoloni, pronounced "provolone┬┤ee." Manteche is made by hand, wrapping mild provolone around sweet cream butter. As the cheese ages, the butter becomes cultured and takes on the flavor of the cheese. Originally, this cheese provided a way to keep butter without refrigeration. In Italy, these are sometimes called "Burrini." A giganti is a mammoth Wisconsin provolone often displayed by retailers prior to cutting.

Recipes with Provolone