Italians on Italians
Beyond Toscano

Away from the herd – Tuscan sheep cheese

Away from the herd – Tuscan sheep cheese
With so many different types of cheese in the world, it seems strange that we tend to stick to the varieties we know and love. If your tastes are a little more adventurous, there are some delightfully different kinds of cheese just waiting to be discovered.

One such type of cheese that you may not have tried is Pecorino Toscano – sheep’s cheese from Tuscany. Cheeses made from ewe’s milk are generally much lighter than those made from cows or goats, having a delicate texture and lighter flavor. Rich in vitamins and minerals and with twice as much calcium as cow’s milk, sheep’s cheese is worth a try – especially if you’re generally lactose intolerant and love cheese – the finer fat component makes it easier for the body to digest.

There are 14 different types of pecorino Toscano, one of the most interesting being Beccellone. Slightly salted, with a light, spicy flavor, this soft, crumbly cheese is sold sealed in a pod to help keep it fresh. Unlike most chesses, it’s not aged, so once opened, only lasts a few days. It’s only made between March and June, making its fleeting appearance on Tuscan menus feel special. The perfect Easter picnic ingredient, it works wonders served with broad beans.