Burrata di Andria PGI is a string cheese made from cow's milk and obtained from a mixture of cream and cheese. The outer skin is made exclusively of spun cheese which surrounds a mixture of cream and stringy spun cheese. It has a round, sack-like shape with a characteristic closed top.
The production and packaging area of Burrata di Andria PGI is within the entire territory of the Apulia Region.
The milk can be either raw or pasteurised at 72° C for 15 seconds, and must be heated to 35-37° C. Curdling, which is obtained by adding natural calf rennet, is preceded by fermentation with the addition of food acids (citric or lactic acid) and a starter culture or whey starter. The curd, broken into lumps the size of hazelnuts, is separated from the starter and left to rest until the lactose has fully converted into lactic acid. The curd is then spun with boiling water and salt may be added. Part of the spun curd is separated into strings by hand and then cooled in water until it forms a spongy mass; this is then mixed with cream to form the filling (stracciatella). The remainder of the spun curd is shaped into small sacks, which are then filled with the Stracciatella and carefully closed at the top. The sacks are then hardened in cold water. If the salt was not added during the spinning process, the sacks can then be salted in brine.
Appearance and Flavour
Burrata di Andria PGI is a small, round sack of spun cheese that is white and shiny, with a characteristic closed top. The filling, or stracciatella, has a spongy consistency and is made of spun cheese that has been separated into strings by hand and immersed in cream. Burrata di Andria PGI weighs between 100 gr and 1 kg and the skin has a thickness that is greater than or equal to 2 mm. The flavour is given to the mixture of fresh or cooked milk, butter and cream.
The story that Burrata di Andria was invented in an old farmhouse in the early twentieth century, by a certain Lorenzo Bianchino, has been handed down orally over the decades. It is said that due to heavy snowfall he was not able to take the milk into town and, needing to transform it and, more importantly, use the cream, he followed the production method used for mantèche (skins of mature spun cheese in which butter was kept) to try and produce a fresh product. He therefore decided to mix the remnants of spun cheese processing with some cream and wrap the mixture in a skin made of pure spun cheese. One of the first mentions dates back to 1931, in the Touring Club Guide, and it was an instant success, so much so, that the Shah of Iran became one of its greatest fans.
Burrata di Andria PGI must be eaten fresh. Its shelf life is an indication of the continuous link between traditional production and territory. Nonetheless, Burrata di Andria PGI enjoys an excellent reputation among consumers, as demonstrated by its diffused presence on the menus of many restaurants around the world, where the value of this product is highlighted by specifying its Andrian origins.
When cut, Burrata di Andria PGI has a filling of cream and stringy spun cheese that has been "shredded" by hand. The term "stracciatella" originates from this processing method.