There is nothing authentic or traditional about those plastic-filled grating cheeses in your grocer’s aisle. Additionally, if you are purchasing freshly grated cheese at the deli, you still are not even close to being on track with the true taste of Parmesan grating cheeses.
Never buy grating cheeses in canisters, or from the deli. The taste and quality are not there. I know this, a self-trained Home Chef, a Pro Chef from my Italian Deli/Restaurant days, and growing up in a very authentic Italian Home!
Grating cheese is supposed to intensify and bolster the flavor of the food they are about to be sprinkled atop. These cheeses in the canister and clear containers will not.
Provide the foods you eat with a simple complexity in taste. Sprinkling the 3 best grating cheeses atop vegetables, fish dishes, pasta, soups, and more are just the beginning.
Now you can read on. Honestly, I may sound like a food snob but if you are beyond eating Ramen Noodles daily and eating Mac and Cheese out of a box then you will understand what I am talking about.
Food should taste good and those cheeses in powder form or in a canister are not cheese and are quite possibly filled with cellulose filler!
3 Best Grating Cheeses – What’s it all about?
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In m world, shaker bottles don’t exist, because there is nothing FRESH about something in a container. Prepackaged food is your enemy. Substitute fresh or fresh frozen any time you can.
Your taste buds are going to thank you and your cooking will be on track to more flavorful and rewarding by eliminated prepackaged elements. Remember, these are my opinion and based on my usage.
A Note About Grating Cheeses
Grating cheeses are those HARD cheeses we grate and add to our food. Some put grating cheeses on pasta, seafood, vegetables, risotto and so on. I will tell you this, the taste and what food pairs with what grating cheese is personal.
Personally, I alternate, and try, test and taste. It’s the best way to learn what YOU like. Just because Chef so and so states to use one or the other on Eggplant Parmesan, that’s his opinion. Use your palate as a guide, not theirs. I NEVER do what others say, I stand on my own and try, which is what makes food your own!
La Mia Famiglia (My Family) – 3 Best Grating Cheeses
Growing up in a traditional and authentic Italian family. From my Parents to my Godparents and Grandparents, one thing was certain, Pasta on Sundays never would taste manufactured.
Did I mention that the sauce was never out of a jar? So, it would follow that the grating cheese that accompanied it would also be hand-grated and fresh!
Speaking Of Graters – Let’s Look at A Few For those 3 best grating cheeses!
Guess what? The freshly grated cheese also enhances the complexity of the dish, even with the basic Pasta and Marinara Sauce. All it takes is the swipe of the cheese grater and bada bing, bada boom.
Suddenly the dish you are about to taste moves to a more organismic level without much fuss! We used 2 types of grating cheeses: One type is from Cow’s Milk and the other From Ewes (Sheep Milk), which creates 2 very different tastes. Ready?
This particular cheese grater is perfect for shavings of cheese. It’s Commercial Grade in strength so it will take a beating in the kitchen! You will be able to use this for shavings of chocolate, lemon, and hard cheeses. It’s also priced well.
Hands down, however, I prefer a rotary grater. It’s ability to take my fingers away from the plane make it more practical. Especially true for those of you just starting to crank your own cheese. One note here, if you have RA or arthritis period, it’s not gonna be your best friend, as you need to crank and add a tad of pressure to the top to get results.
Don’t worry if you are left-handed or right, you can easily switch the handle. Plus, this cleans easily. I have never been dissatisfied with this particular grater. I will tell you this as well, I never use it for anything but my cheese. That is important because nuts and chocolate dull the grater! Buy extras for those items.
Grab your own rotary grater here > Hand Rotary Grater.
Our Foods With the 3 Best Grating Cheeses
The cheese that graced our tables and that was sprinkled across the plates of pasta, veggies, risotto, bean dishes, seafood, and meats always, sent my tastebuds on a whole new journey. Sometimes the journey was more while other times either sweet and lightly salty!
As you have been reading my blog for years, you might recall for a while, we owned a traditional Italian Store/Restaurant. My background in the world of Italian Foods only increased with store ownership, learning from one of the kings in the business (who shall remain nameless). He’s a king, and snarky all in one mouthful, lol! Truly Italian right?
Growing up with Italian Grandparents and my parents who cherished and celebrated the Italian heritage translated to dining on fine Italian foods with consistency.
We would trek to the Strip District, week after week getting all the right cheeses, lunch meats(then I was not a vegetarian), and kinds of pasta to prepare the family meals.
I remember when we would visit the one sausage company and we would see the Sopressata and Capicola hanging from the ceiling, it was that Italian there! Gone are those days, however, the traditional Italian Stores that still sell the REAL foods are there.
Let’s get to the best grating cheeses so you can go out and shop. You don’t want to let another day go by without trying one of these cheeses. IT really won’t matter which you choose for now, as you will learn which is best for your dishes when you taste them.
The price you pay for this type of cheese is hardly $3 and $4 per shaker, but the cheese you are getting in return will enhance the tastes of the foods. You are about to create the truest form of gratification after preparation in taste, that you have ever experienced.
These cheeses offer much more complexity and liven a basic food such as Risotto adding flare, and savory flavors. Get ready to enhance flavor beyond the norm. Make sure to purchase a nice cheese grater, I find that Stainless Steel graters are far more reliable and durable than those plastic counterparts you see at stores, invest in one and you will have it for a long while!
Parmigiano Reggiano – 3 Best Grating Cheeses
Simply put, this is a raw cow’s milk cheese that comes to us with a minimum aging of 12 months. It is delicious across Pasta, laced across a pizza after it has been baked, on bean salads, through escarole and rice and atop the soup.
Want to taste something delicious? Shave pieces and place the Parmigiano Reggiano through your salad, let it dance through Asparagus with Lemon. I make a mean Escarole and rice, and a simple shaving alters the taste without question.
Want some but can’t find it locally? Just click this word: Parmigiano Reggiano and you can get a piece here!
Another Parmesan created from a cow’s milk, however, this one offers a sweeter, more savory taste, yielding way to a lightly salted touch. You will see it is more granular in consistency.
Nonetheless, if you are just starting out the tasting tests, you might want to start here and grow your palate from this point. into the cheeses.
SErving suggestions for Grana Padano include slicing thin shavings atop a Crostini with some sauteed peppers. Alternatively, you can simply nibble it with a great glass of wine and that is my favorite way to enjoy this particular cheese.
Remember there is a salt complex to it, so less is better, but it will satisfy your pang for a saltier, sweeter cheese in a few shaves, no chunks! Grana Padano delivers.
Seeking this and can’t find it locally? NO worries, just click here > Grana Padano you will be guided to be able to purchase it. (affiliate)
Pecorino Romano grating cheese offers a very distinctive taste both sharp and salty. The longer the Pecorino Romano ages, the more sharp it becomes. I love Pecorino Romano and dined on many dishes while in Sardinia, Italy that offered fresh Pecorino Romano atop them.
For those that are preparing sauces that call for cheese through them, this cheese will hold up more boldly than any of the aforementioned. Definitely a pungent cheese, but don’t be turned off by the smell.
It’s actually a type we buy and it’s called Locatelli Pecorino Romano. One of the premiere Romanos. Now, this cheese is crafted from a Sheep’s milk and tastes very different from Parmesan. It is NOT Parmesan.
The taste is exceptional and the foods that you choose to grace with Pecorino Romano will boldly intensify in taste!
3 Best Grating Cheeses are Actually 4 Best
Now if you want tips as to how to use the whole cheese chunk including the cheese rind, make sure to read my other article on How to Use the Rinds of Parmesan Cheese. Lavishly live the foods you eat, by celebrating each of them with one of these 3 divine grating cheeses.
Allow your taste buds to travel internationally while never leaving your dining table. Experience what real cheese tastes like!