As you are eating your salad or pizza, have you ever wondered why does mozzarella taste like nothing?
Let’s be fair; it really does!
It has no discernible taste or flavor whatsoever.
Even on a pizza, its only real job is to be stringy and gooey, not to add to the taste!
Is it the coldness of the fridge that destroys any flavor?
Has something been missed out during the cheesemaking process?
Let’s find out why mozzarella does nothing for our tastebuds!
Mass-produced mozzarella is often flavorless, and primarily used for melting on pizzas. It lacks taste and is made from cow’s milk. It adds stringiness and may have a slight saltiness from the brine. Fresh mozzarella made from buffalo milk, however, has a rich, creamy, and savory flavor. It’s best enjoyed in salads, offering a marked difference in taste compared to the mass-produced variety.
Why is Mozzarella So Bland?
You have to admit that when eaten on its own, mozzarella tastes of nothing.
It has no distinct flavor, it’s as if something is missing.
What’s the point of cheese that doesn’t taste good?
And yet, if you look at many Italian restaurant menus, they often have a Caprese salad listed, which is simply mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil.
The fact is that most people have only ever tried the cheaper pizza mozzarella, which was specifically created in the US to melt quickly.
This is what we use on pizzas that gives them their characteristic stringiness.
It is always made from cow’s milk and has a low moisture content.
In effect, mozzarella creates texture, not taste, and allows the other flavors on a pizza to shine through.
Now, fresh Italian mozzarella is a whole new ball game!
This is the good stuff that you put in a salad, and ideally, it should be made from buffalo milk.
You will find it has a richer, creamier taste, almost savory.
It can be eaten on its own but is even better when drizzled with a little olive oil with a pinch of salt.
Or maybe cracked black pepper or balsamic vinegar!
You can use buffalo mozzarella on a pizza, but it will go tough when cooked; it’s not meant to melt.
A better option is to tear off small pieces of the cheese and add them once the pizza is done.
Should Mozzarella Be Served at Room Temperature?
Because mozzarella typically tastes of nothing, is it perhaps the coldness of the fridge that destroys any taste?
Should mozzarella be served at room temperature?
Actually, it’s not really recommended to leave mozzarella out of the fridge.
As it is a fresh soft cheese with relatively high moisture content, it is more susceptible to mold.
Harder cheeses should be removed about an hour before serving, but mozzarella should be kept chilled right up until it is served.
If the mozzarella is taken from the fridge too early, check for unusual odors or any change in color before consuming it.
However, if there is a slight orange tinge to the cheese, it is not an indication of mold.
It is actually the presence of bacteria, but it is harmless.
Having said all this, the Italians who created the original mozzarella from buffalo milk would totally disagree!
They are quite happy not to refrigerate mozzarella at all.
In fact, if you were to visit a delicatessen in Italy, the mozzarella would not even be in the fridge in the shop.
However, we are talking about the highest quality cheese, which is preserved in whey.
Whey is a liquid that is left over in the cheesemaking process.
It is an effective preservative, especially if the mozzarella is kept in a sealed container.
Realistically, the typical mozzarella found in US supermarkets will be stored in water or maybe brine.
So, the advice still stands; unless it is a high quality, high moisture content mozzarella, don’t serve it at room temperature.
I Can’t Taste Anything
Mozzarella can be extremely bland and taste of nothing.
That is standard if using mass-produced pizza mozzarella.
However, fresh mozzarella made from buffalo milk has a distinct, rich, savory flavor.
The coldness of the cheese makes no difference, and it should be kept refrigerated.
Treat yourself to some fresh mozzarella and see how it should really taste!
Of course, you might have a different option and think that mozzarella has a salty taste!