Learn About Provolone Cheese

Author: Chef Toby

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What Is Provolone Cheese?

Provolone is an Italian semi-hard, cow’s milk cheese that is made in a rounded tube, or ball shape. Sometimes, it has an inedible, wax rind. There are three varieties of cheese, Dolce, which is aged for two to three months, Piccante, which is aged for four months or longer, and American deli Provolone, which models after Provolone Dolce but has a very mild flavor.

Learn About Provolones

What Does Provolone Cheese Taste Like?

Provolone cheese can be anywhere from mild to sharp in flavor, depending on the age. Provolone Dolce, is sweet, and mild, while Provolone Piccante is buttery, sharp, and somewhat spicy.

How Can You Eat Provolone Cheese?

Provolone Dolce, or deli provolone, is a great melting cheese, making it great for sandwiches, casseroles, and pizza. Provolone Piccante’s sharper flavor makes it a great addition to a cheese plate, as a snack, or grated onto pizzas, salads, pasta, or anything that usually has a cheese topping. 

Where Can You Buy Provolone Cheese?

American provolone cheese can be found at the deli counter or dairy aisle of most grocery stores. Stores that have a bigger variety of specialty cheeses will also carry Piccante and Dolce varieties of provolone. 

How Do You Store Provolone Cheese?

To keep provolone fresh, wrap it in plastic wrap or parchment paper and keep it in your refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. 

Fun Fact About Provolone Cheese:

Like Mozzarella, provolone is made by heating milk, extracting curds, and mixing and stretching the curds until they become stringy. These balls of curd are then put into molds or tied and left to age. In Italian, this type of cheese is called pasta filata, or “spun paste.”

Did You Know?

Provolone contains a large amount of protein and calcium, both of which are essential to growing strong bones and muscles! 

Recipes Using Provolone Cheese

Bruschetta with Provolone

This recipe requires no cooking and is perfect for practicing your knife skills. On a cutting board, dice onion, tomatoes, garlic, fresh basil, and provolone. Combine these ingredients in a bowl and season with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Serve the bruschetta with pieces of toasted bread.

Provolone Cheese Roll-Ups

These no-cook roll-ups are great for a snack and can be whipped up quickly. In a mixing bowl, combine canned tuna, mashed avocado, mayonnaise, and grated carrot. Dollop the tuna salad on large slices of provolone and roll tightly. Feel free to add additional seasonings to the tuna salad like freshly grated lemon zest or dried herbs.

Provoleta (Grilled Provolone)

Bring this classic Argentinian dish home by serving Provoleta with chimichurri sauce. To make the sauce, blitz parsley, olive oil, oregano, garlic, and vinegar in a food processor until combined. For the cheese, place thick-sliced provolone on a cast-iron skillet and cook until golden brown on each side, flipping once using a spatula. Serve the cheese immediately with the chimichurri sauce and toasted baguettes.

Frittata with Zucchini and Provolone

Bring provolone and veggies into your breakfast with this frittata. Start by sautéing sliced zucchini with scallions and olive oil in a skillet. Then add scrambled eggs that have been beaten with milk, salt, and pepper. Stir the mixture into the skillet until the egg begins to cook. Add provolone cheese and transfer the skillet to the broiler to finish the cooking and melt the cheese.

Vegetarian Pizza

Use store-bought pizza dough and your favorite jarred tomato sauce for a quick weekday meal that is ready in less than 20 minutes! On a baking sheet, lay a prepared, stretched piece of pizza dough, and layer with sauce. Sprinkle the pizza with a blend of mozzarella and provolone cheeses. Top the pizza with your favorite thinly sliced vegetables, like mushrooms, peppers, zucchini, onions, or even sliced jalapeños for a spicier pie! Bake the pizza in the oven until the crust is golden brown, the cheese has melted, and the vegetables are soft.

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