Description

Wisconsin cheesemakers make romano with cow milk and produce a cheese that, like its Italian counterpart, has slightly more fat and a flavor that is sharp, tangy and more assertive than parmesan. When Italian cheesemakers use sheep milk, they call it pecorino (sheep) romano.

Appearance

Creamy white

Texture

Hard, granular

Flavor

Sharp, piquant

Serving Suggestions

Romano can be used in many of the same recipes as parmesan and asiago, especially when a more pronounced cheese flavor is desired. Serve a bowl of freshly grated romano on the table with pasta, steamed vegetables, soups, salads and pizzas. Sprinkle romano over egg dishes such as quiches or frittatas. Add grated romano to the breading used to coat chicken, fish or vegetables. Fry as usual.

Goes Well With

Apples, pears, tomatoes, olives, pepperocini Red wines such as Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel or Chianti; beer

Styles/Varieties

Bulk: Romano comes bulk in barrels, blocks, and waxed and vacuum-packed wheels; precut in exact and random weights; and shredded or grated. Bulk wheels include a 75-pound Grana, 20- to 25-pound half- or quarter-wheel, vacuum packed or waxed; Note: Grana comes in 1/8-wheels (about 9-pounds). Bulk grated and bulk shredded comes in a 10-pound tub, 5-pound tub, 10-pound bag, 5-pound bag, 2-pound bag. Retail: Cuts include random- and exact-weight, cake-cut, pie-cut, square-cut. Retail grated comes in a 16-ounce shaker, 8-ounce shaker and 4-ounce shaker. Retail grated and shredded include a 16-ounce cup and 8-ounce cup. Wisconsin cheesemakers produce a number of varieties of romano, including aged, Kosher and organic.

Performance Note

Bring hard cheeses to room temperature and score the rind before cutting. Italians categorize hard cheeses like parmesan and romano as granas, which refers to the granular texture they develop with longer aging.

  Cold Surface Broil Oven (in recipe) Oven (surface) Direct Heat (in suspension)
Sliced
Cubed
Shaved
Shredded
Grated
Crumbled
Spooned/Spread