What is the difference between Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano Reggiano?

Key Difference: The main difference between Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano Reggiano is that Pecorino Romano is made from sheep’s milk while Parmigiano Reggiano is made from cow’s milk.

Both kinds of cheese are hard, salty, and have a nutty flavor. However, Pecorino Romano is a bit sharper than Parmigiano Reggiano.

The two kinds of cheese are often used in the same dishes, such as pasta and risotto.

Most people would say that Parmigiano Reggiano is the better cheese, but there are those who prefer Pecorino Romano.

What is Pecorino Romano?

Pecorino Romano is a hard, salty cheese made from sheep milk. It has a sharp, pungent flavor and is often used in pasta dishes and salads. It is also a popular cheese for grating.

Originated in Lazio, Italy, Pecorino Romano is a protected cheese variety that can only be made with milk from certain breeds of sheep.

While it is available in many countries, the best Pecorino Romano cheese comes from Italy.

Buttery, nutty, and slightly sweet, Pecorino Romano is a delicious cheese that can be enjoyed on its own or used in recipes. Most commonly, it is used as a substitute for Parmesan cheese.

Pecorino Romano is made by curdling sheep’s milk and then adding rennet to form the curds.

The curds are then cut into small pieces and stirred before being placed in molds. After a few hours, the cheese is removed from the molds and allowed to age for at least 5 months.

During this time, it is rubbed with olive oil and sea salt to give it its characteristic flavor and texture.

What is Parmigiano Reggiano?

Parmigiano Reggiano is an Italian cheese made from cow’s milk. It is a hard, dry cheese that has a sharp, salty flavor.

Parmesan is the most famous variety of Parmigiano Reggiano, but there are many other types of this cheese. It is used in many Italian dishes, as well as in other cuisines.

This cheese type is named after the two provinces in Italy where it is made: Parmigiano in Parma, and Reggiano in Reggio Emilia.

The history of Parmigiano Reggiano dates back to the 12th century when a cheese-making guild was formed in these two provinces.

The cheese is made using traditional methods and is still produced by many of the original producers.

As of now, Parmigiano Reggiano is a protected cheese variety. This means that the name and production methods are strictly regulated in order to ensure quality.

Pecorino Romano vs Parmigiano Reggiano

One of the biggest differences between these two cheeses is their production process. Pecorino Romano is made from sheep’s milk, while Parmigiano Reggiano is made from cow’s milk.

Additionally, Parmigiano Reggiano is aged for at least 12 months, while Pecorino Romano is aged for only five months.

This difference in aging results in a more intense flavor for Parmigiano Reggiano. And also, Pecorino Romano is a harder cheese than Parmigiano Reggiano.

Another difference is their price. Parmigiano Reggiano is more expensive than Pecorino Romano.

Main Differences

Key differences between Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano Reggiano include –

Aging Process

One of the important differences between Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano Reggiano is the aging process.

Parmigiano Reggiano is aged for at least 12 months, while Pecorino Romano is only aged for about 5 months.

This shorter aging process gives Pecorino Romano a saltier flavor. However, Parmigiano Reggiano is also a little nuttier in flavor.

Production

Another difference between these two cheeses is the production process.

Parmigiano Reggiano is made with whole milk, while Pecorino Romano is made with skimmed milk. This makes Parmigiano Reggiano a little creamier and richer in flavor.

Texture

The two kinds of cheese also differ in terms of their texture.

Pecorino Romano is a hard, salty cheese with a grainy texture. It is made from sheep’s milk and has a strong flavor that can be used in both savory and sweet dishes.

This texture is perfect for grating over pasta or salads. However, Pecorino Romano is also a good melting cheese, so it can be used in dishes like pizza or lasagna.

Parmigiano Reggiano is a hard, crumbly cheese that has a granular texture. It is made from cow’s milk and has a nutty flavor.

The cheese is aged for at least 12 months, which gives it its distinctive flavor and texture. Most people enjoy Parmigiano Reggiano as a snack or as an ingredient in recipes.

Because of its hard texture, it can be grated or shaved into small pieces and used in dishes such as pasta or salads.

Color

The color of Pecorino Romano is typically off-white but can vary depending on the age and producer. You can also find Pecorino Romano in a natural rind, which is a pale yellow.

The interior of the cheese is usually a creamy white. However, Pecorino Romano is also made in a black rind, which gives the cheese a slightly different taste and texture.

The color of Parmigiano Reggiano is typically a deep yellow but can vary depending on the age and variety of cheese.

Pale cheeses are generally younger and have a milder flavor, while older, more deeply colored cheeses are stronger in taste.

The difference in color is due to the presence of carotenoid pigments, which are also responsible for the cheese’s characteristic nutty flavor.

Cheese Types

The three types of Parmigiano Reggiano are:

  • Grana Padano, which is a hard cheese made from cow’s milk
  • Gorgonzola, which is a blue cheese made from cow’s milk
  • Pecorino Romano, which is a hard cheese made from sheep’s milk

These three cheeses are all protected by the Denominazione di Origine Protetta (DOP) designation, meaning that they must be made according to certain specific regulations in order to be called Parmigiano Reggiano.

There are many types of Pecorino Romano, but the most common are:

  • Pecorino Sardo: This cheese is made from sheep’s milk and has a strong flavor. It is often used in dishes such as pasta or risotto
  • Pecorino Toscano: This cheese is made in Tuscany, Italy, and has a slightly sweet flavor. It is often used in dishes such as pizza or lasagna
  • Pecorino di Capra: This cheese is made from goat’s milk and has a strong flavor. It is often used in dishes such as pasta or risotto.

Cuisine

Pecorino Romano is a cheese made from sheep’s milk that is popular in Italian cuisine. It has a strong, salty flavor and is often used in dishes such as pasta or pizza.

This cheese is also a popular ingredient in dishes from other parts of the world, such as the United States.

Most common dishes include:

  • Ravioli with Pecorino Romano cheese filling
  • Pizza with Pecorino Romano cheese and pepperoni toppings
  • Macaroni and Cheese with a healthy dose of this hard Italian sheep milk cheese

Parmesan cheese or Parmigiano Reggiano is a hard, granular cheese that is used in several dishes. It is most commonly used in Italian cuisine, where it is grated over pasta or salads.

Parmesan can also be used to make sauces and soups. Generally, this cheese is added at the end of cooking so that it retains its flavor and texture.

In the U.S., dishes that use Parmesan cheese include macaroni and cheese, chicken Parmesan, and lasagna. These dishes are popular because of the cheese’s salty and nutty flavor.

Nutritional Value

Another major difference between the two cheeses is their nutritional value.

Parmigiano Reggiano is high in protein and calcium, while Pecorino Romano is lower in both of these nutrients.

The fact that Parmigiano Reggiano is also a little higher in fat may make it more caloric, but it is still a healthier choice than Pecorino Romano.

However, Pecorino Romano does have slightly more sodium than Parmigiano Reggiano.

Cost

Parmigiano Reggiano is very expensive compared to Pecorino Romano

The cost of Pecorino Romano can vary depending on factors such as the supplier, the region it is sourced from, and the current market conditions.

However, a rough estimate would be around $10-12 per pound.

The cost of Parmigiano Reggiano can vary depending on the weight and type. Generally, it costs around $20 per pound.

However, it is an expensive type of cheese so the price can go up to $30 per pound.

Origin

The important difference between Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano Reggiano is where they come from.

Parmigiano Reggiano is cheeses made in the provinces of Parma, Modena, Bologna and Reggio Emilia in Italy’s Emilia-Romagna region.

Pecorino Romano, on the other hand, is a cheese made in Lazio, in central Italy.

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