Mozzarella di Bufala
Authentic Mozzarella di Buffala is produced under strict regulations across seven regions of central and southern Italy: Latina, Salerno, Caserta and certain parts of Naples, Benevento and Rome.
Records refer to the introduction of water buffalo into Italy as far back as the 12th century, although it's known they were used as draft animals several centuries earlier in the marshy areas south of Naples. It wasn't until the 1700's that Mozzarella di Bufala started to gain popularity, by which time the formerly wild buffalo had become thoroughly domesticated.
Mozzarella di Bufala belongs to the "pasta filata" family of cheeses, which refers to the process whereby the curds are heated to a point where they can be stretched and formed into balls or other shapes. The stretching action, essentially, creates multiple layers of curd that trap moisture within them. This gives Mozzarella its very sweet, milky, fresh taste that has a hint of sourness about it. The texture is very soft and moist and can be slightly granular.
Rather than claim to have mountains of flavor, Mozzarella is designed to be a perfect vehicle and foil for other ingredients, especially in cooking when its melting qualities come to the fore.
Best eaten as fresh as possible