They’re both Mozzarella, so are Fresh Mozzarella and regular Mozzarella the same thing? Is regular mozzarella somehow less fresh?
The Short Answer:
Fresh Mozzarella and Regular Mozzarella are the same cheese but prepared differently.
The Long Answer:
As an Italian American, I love me some Mozzarella, but I’ve always been fascinated by the texture and taste of what is known as “fresh mozzarella.” As a child, once I learned that this was a thing, I started to think of regular mozzarella as dirty or somehow rotten since it wasn’t “fresh.”
I was both right and wrong in this regard.
Fresh mozzarella is a pillowy and moist white cheese that usually comes in the form of a ball. Fresh mozzarella is usually packed in water or hand wrapped in plastic wrap. It has a very high moisture content and as such comes with a relatively short shelf life. Typically, it’s a good idea to eat fresh mozzarella within a week of its creation. Unlike the more common form of this cheese, it’s not as easily melted, and often turns into a soupy puddle when heated. This won’t do well in poutine or on nachos, but it goes great on Neapolitan pizza.
While this product was originally made from buffalo’s milk in Italy, it has since transitioned into being made from the far more common cow’s milk. However, there are many old Italians who still insist that all fresh mozzarella comes from buffalos.
What we’re calling “regular’ mozzarella is actually just a low moisture version of this cheese. It is made from souring fresh mozzarella for a longer period of time and drying it out. It is because of its lower moisture count that fresh mozzarella tastes saltier than its fresh counterpart. It also has a longer shelf life, which is what makes it more appealing for mass production and consumption. This is the kind of mozzarella found in mozzarella sticks and on pizza. The low moisture within the cheese makes it more susceptible to browning and stretching when heated.
Do you prefer fresh mozzarella or regular mozzarella? Is it a part of your keto diet? What is your favorite cheesy recipe? Sound off in the comment section below and let us know!