Author Topic: Grande question  (Read 11900 times)

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Offline pizzaJoe

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #50 on: December 13, 2006, 10:19:22 AM »
Hi Lydia,

Re: sauces.  I'm pretty happy with the worst case scenario for me, 6-1's All Purpose Ground Tomatoes from the local Andronico's.  *But*, as you know, I'm always on the look-out for something new to try.   :chef:  So, if Dan's gonna get a case of FULL RED, I'd be happy to take a can or two (or three...) off someone's hands...   :D  Also, I'm interested in trying out any of the Allegro pizza sauces and the Christina's Organic ground tomatoes.  Personally, I prefer the sauces that use plum/roma/Italian style tomoatoes as a base but variety is the spice of life!   ;D
PizzaJoe


Offline SLICEofSLOMON

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #51 on: December 13, 2006, 12:57:47 PM »
Hi All,

Grande's 50/50 blend is half part-skim mozzarella and half provolone (their version is called Provonello). The blend was devised for mid-western pizza markets and some New England markets that heavily blend mozzarella and provolone on all of their pies. Grande blends part skim with provolone because the provolone already has such a high fat content that oil off and burn can be a problem. Those characteristics are diminished with part-skim mozzarella. However, the blend still can have some burning and oil problems depending upon how the pies are prepared. I would avoid using this blend in a high temperature situation--anything over 550-600 degrees or it will surely burn.

Grande's whole milk mozzarella performs beautifully in all applications, even in the highest heat, it still melts great without burning. Also age plays a great roll on how this cheese performs. Some prefer "newer" cheese because it is a bit less salty and is a bit milder in flavor. Others will only use "aged" which is over a month past the date on the loaf or package. I am one of those who prefer to have a bit of age on their product. The cheese takes on a more developed nutty flavor as it ages and along with that a more pronounced flavor of salt. Think of the difference between any fresher cheese and aged--the aged loses moisture and concentrates the flavors and the salt. Since I don't add any salt in my sauce and the other toppings are salty enough, I like the flavor that aged Grande brings to my pizzas.

I understand that it is difficult for consumers to get Grande, let alone control the age of the batch--but that is why some of you report different characteristics from the cheese--it does change as it ages. Some places actually specify a certain number of weeks age on all the Grande they buy. I like at least 6 weeks age--6 to 8 weeks is optimum for me. There should be a batch number and date on each loaf or package.

PS: Part skim should not be aged; use it as soon as possible, or freeze it. Unlike whole milk, it develops mostly a salty flavor and because of the reduced fat, it does not develop a richer flavor like the whole milk version. I also find it tends to dry out faster.

Evelyne :pizza:

Offline SLICEofSLOMON

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #52 on: December 13, 2006, 01:05:59 PM »
Oops, I left out something:

All of the loaf, shredded and diced products are "low moisture", they are all "aged" before release. Grande's fresh mozzarella line is Fior di Latte which is "fresh", non-aged and packed in brine. All block mozzarella--any brand, be it loaf, shredded or diced is low-moisture.

As a cheese "ages" outside of brine it loses moisture. Depending upon how much age, directly reflects how much moisture. Grande's cheeses are meant to perform similarly within a set parameter. However, each pizza maker has their own "thing" I know of some people who like using the cheese 2 weeks beyond its final date because they like the way it tastes and performs. The cheese isn't bad, it is just beyond the window that Grande finds optimal.

Evelyne :pizza:

Offline Lydia

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #53 on: December 13, 2006, 02:41:13 PM »
Evelyne

That's great news! Thank you so much for the explanation.  :D


Quote
I like at least 6 weeks age

If I understood correctly, Cheese must be 4 weeks past due date to be considered "aged"
When you said you like 6 weeks age, is this in addition to the 4 weeks?

Do you have any specific information on how aging affects the stretchability?

When a pizza operator chooses to age their own cheese is their some sort of procedure, or is it just simply a matter of holding the cheese longer under normal refrigeration, in it's original packaging?

Is it correct to assume that freezing accelerates the "aging" characteristics due to an increased moisture loss? Or is this an entirely different matter?

Thanks again!

The roundest knight at King Arthur's round table was Sir Cumference.They say he acquired his size from eating too much pi.

Offline SLICEofSLOMON

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #54 on: December 13, 2006, 03:29:39 PM »
Hi Lydia,

I believe the Grande Products have a 60 day shelf life, so when I say that I like my cheese aged at least 6 weeks, it is 6 weeks from the initial production date. Some endusers prefer to use the cheese within the first 4 weeks of release because they prefer less age, while others push the envelope and like to use the cheese beyond its expired date. I prefer to use the cheese from 6 weeks up until the expire date. I have used it past the date, but it gets a bit too soupy for me and it develops a pronounced sharpness. Some pizza makers actually prefer that tangy sharpness. I prefer a mellow, nutty rich flavor for my pies.

As for "aging" the cheese, all you have to do is keep it refrigerated and un-opened. Freezing the cheese does indeed remove moisture from the cheese, but not in the same way that aging does, it is more like desiccation of the cheese. The moisture is pulled out in the form of crystallization, which compromises the the flavor and texture of the cheese. You will note that the cheese does not have all of the flavor, or the melting capacities it had before it was frozen. Still, Grande is the best cheese to freeze because of all that butterfat in their cheese, actually holds up better than others once frozen. Don't ask Grande about freezing because they will tell you--never. But never is a very long time, and for home purposes, their cheese freezes quite well. Just don't tell them I told you that  >:D

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #55 on: December 13, 2006, 03:41:21 PM »
In August I did some research on the Grande cheese (50/50) expiration dates and the matter of freezing, which I discussed with a customer service rep when I called Grande. The thread in which these matters are covered is this one: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3429.msg29127.html#msg29127.

Peter
« Last Edit: December 13, 2006, 03:43:24 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline csacks

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #56 on: December 14, 2006, 10:48:51 AM »
I recently purchased some Grande whole milk mozz from Vern.  The tase is good, but I am looking for a cheese with a slightly different texture in my mouth.  I found the whole milk to be a little creamy.  Do you think I would be happier with part skim?  CraiG

Offline DNA Dan

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #57 on: December 14, 2006, 01:34:05 PM »
Thanks for the clarification Evelyne. I checked the 50/50 blend that I have and it is indeed part-skim.

Joe, We can split a case or go 3 way with Lydia on the sauce if she likes. I usually get about (4) 1 quart freezer bags out of 1 #10 can. I freeze it on the third day after making it, and each bag is good for about 2 pies right out of the freezer. This depends on the amount of sauce you like on your pie though.

Offline pizzaJoe

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #58 on: December 14, 2006, 05:39:38 PM »
Joe, We can split a case or go 3 way with Lydia on the sauce if she likes. I usually get about (4) 1 quart freezer bags out of 1 #10 can. I freeze it on the third day after making it, and each bag is good for about 2 pies right out of the freezer. This depends on the amount of sauce you like on your pie though.

Hey Dan, great!  I'm up for a split however it works out!  Thanks!   ;D
PizzaJoe


Offline nepa-pizza-snob

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #59 on: December 14, 2006, 11:22:03 PM »
Shoot - I pay $2.50 a pound for my Grande Mozzarella and Provolone blocks. $4-$6/lb is robbery

I too have been searching for that lovely afterchew. I have settled on a Mozz + Prov blend, but
not Grande Mozz. Their Prov is banging, but the Mozz is more creamy than stretchy and chewy

I alternate between Wegmans, Boarshead, and Maggio Mozz

Offline abatardi

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #60 on: January 04, 2007, 08:24:02 PM »
Lydia & All,

I had stopped in to Neto's yesterday to ask about the price and he mentioned you had already been there.  He said he was just going to put in an order for a case as he orders his cheese wednesday (he has to buy per case) and you guys could pick it up when you had time. 

I'm not sure what you had decided on, but apparently he ordered the part-skim version (I thought you had told him whole but maybe not  ???).  I bought 2 blocks of it at $3.47/lb (it came in today).  I was a little upset at first when I realized it was part skim on the way home but it's pretty good stuff... Just letting anyone know that is in the area if they want some at less than half what Whole Foods charges.

I'm not sure about the stretch.  I am out of dough at the moment but tomorrow morning I can make a pie and take pics and post here. 

- aba
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Offline abatardi

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Re: Grande question
« Reply #61 on: January 05, 2007, 01:04:12 PM »
Some pics of the part skim cheese attached.  The angle in a couple of them exaggerates how stretchy it really was but it was still pretty good for 2% considering... but then again, less greasy also. 

- Aaron
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