Every couple of weeks I get in the car and drive the 5 or 6 kilometres to a local cheese producer to buy a kilo or two of fresh cheese – more specifically, Grana. A hard, long-keeping cheese, it’s difficult to imagine where the Italian kitchen would be without Grana. We grate it fresh over our pasta every day of the week, use it as an ingredient in stuffing and sometimes we just eat it in chunks as a snack. Simply put, we can’t do without it!
There are probably over a dozen producers of Grana Padano within a 10 kilometre radius of my house. Yet I always go to the same producer. It’s like a dentist – when you find a good one, you stick with them. My neighbour Carlo took me over 5 years back to try this particular cheese. It was good and I have been going back ever since. And I’m not the only one that thinks so. Yesterday when I mentioned to Carlo that I had to go and get some cheese he immediately said he’d like to tag along. By the morning, another 4 of our neighbours who’d passed by the bar had placed an order with Carlo. Buying direct from the producer is cheaper than buying from the supermarket and you can choose the specific producer you want to buy from. Plus, there’s the added bonus that someone else was going to do the leg work – on this occasion, that someone is me. I don’t mind. The way I see it, I’m doing my part for ethical eating – I’m buying local and I’m saving 5 other would-be cheese shoppers from making the same journey. ‘That’ll be twelve kilos of Grana, please’.
To find out more about shopping for grana padano, click on the shopper’s basket to the right.