Typical Italian cheeses: Toma Piemontese DOP

Typical Italian cheeses: Toma Piemontese DOP

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Origins and production area

La Toma is in Piedmont: among others, we remember the Tome of the Valle dellOrco, of Lanzo, of Susa (already mentioned in written documents of the end of the fifteenth century), of Valsesia and Maccagno.
Production area: Alessandria, Asti, Biella, Cuneo, Novara, Turin, Vercelli.
The Protected Designation of Origin was recognized on July 1, 1996.

PDO Piedmontese Toma

Characteristics and production phases

Toma della Valsesia: cylindrical shape (diameter not exceeding 22 cm and 10 cm bare), with a thin and yellowish rind, with white or yellowish paste, with small holes; the taste is sweet tending to just spicy.
Toma del Maccagno: cylindrical shape (diameter up to 30 cm), light rind, yellow-gold colored paste with pronounced holes. The milk, at a temperature of 37 ° C, is left to rest for a while, then it is added to natural liquid rennet. The curd is broken and left to rest on a sparse cloth on which it is kneaded and takes on a cylindrical shape. After being drained for another 24 hours, it is brought to season under a layer of mountain herbs which give it that particular aroma and flavor.
Type of cheese: hard paste, produced with cow's milk or mixed, unfermented.

Gastronomy and recommended wines

Recommended wines for liping: Barolo, Carema, Cabernet of the Euganean Hills.

Production specification - Toma Piemontese DOP

Article 1
Product name
The Protected Designation of Origin "Toma Piemontese" is reserved exclusively for cheese which meets the conditions and requirements established in this production specification.

Article 2
Product description
Raw material:
cow's milk, as defined by the D.P.R. 54/97 art. 2 letter B, whole or partially decimated by surfacing or by centrifuge.
Shape, dimensions and weight:
There are two types:
- whole milk
- semi-fat
It has a cylindrical shape with flat or almost flat faces with a slightly convex edge with a diameter of 15 to 35 cm. The barefoot varies from 4 to 12 cm.
The weight of a shape varies from 1.8 to 4 kg for the "small" shape and from over 4 kg to 10 kg for the "large" shape. Tolerances of more or less than 10% are allowed. All the parameters refer to the cheese at the minimum seasoning times set out in this specification.
Rind: inedible, elastic (for the semi-greasy product) and smooth, straw-colored, gray, reddish or brown depending on the seasoning;
Pasta: straw-white in color;
Structure: moderately firm and elastic, in particular for the semi-fat product, with small holes, widespread for the whole milk product. Semi-cooked cheese ideal as table cheese.
-40% dry minimum for the whole milk product
- minimum 20% on the dry basis for the semi-greasy product
Taste and Aroma: sweet, pleasant and delicate for the whole milk type, intense and harmonious with a fragrant aroma which becomes more characteristic as the maturing process progresses for the semi-fatty product.
It is produced throughout the year.

Article 3
Production area
The area of ​​origin of the milk, processing, maturing and processing of the Toma Piemontese cheese includes the administrative territory, currently in force, of the provinces of: Novara, Vercelli, Biella, Turin, Cuneo, Verbania Cusio Ossola, as well as the municipalities of Acqui Terme , Terzo, Bistagno, Ponti and Denice in the province of Alessandria and Monastero Bormida, Roccaverano, Mombaldone, Olmo Gentile and Serole in the province of Asti.
The Toma Piemontese DOP cheese can use the additional mention "mountain product", as required by the Decree of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of 30/12/2003, when the production area (origin of the milk, processing / processing of the milk and seasoning) is classified as a mountain area.

Article 4
Production technique
No preservatives, coloring pigments, particular flavors and additives are used.
a) Coagulation.
Whole milk, or milk decremated by surfacing or by centrifuge for the semi-fat product, after undergoing a sanitizing treatment is ready for transformation into Piedmontese Toma. Milk from one or more milkings is coagulated in a time ranging from 20 to 50 minutes, at a temperature between 32 ° and 40 ° C, reaching an acidity of not less than 3.3 SH / 50 with animal rennet.
Before coagulation, it is possible to add milk graft, serum graft and / or lactic ferments and / or natural enzymes.
Continuous coagulation processes of milk are not allowed.
b) Break the curd.
The cheese must be produced with the characteristic technology of double breaking the curd in the boiler: the first coarse allows the firming of the cheese mass with a first purging, the second finer allows the further purging and hardening of the curd. It is not allowed to add water to the boiler to decrease the acidity of the curd.
A half-cooking of the curd is allowed.
c) Extracting and unloading the curd.
Once the appropriate consistency is reached, the curd is extracted and / or discharged, favoring the separation of the whey by placing it in the appropriate molds / molds. A first pressing is allowed to further promote syneresis.
In this phase the necessary turning is carried out.
The use of canvases, bundles and wooden molds is also allowed.
d) Salting.
Once purged, the cheese is put into brine or dry salted using sea salt for a period commensurate with the size and production techniques.
e) Seasoning.
Seasoning is carried out in the production area in suitable environments for a minimum period of 20 days for the "small" forms and 45 days for the "large" forms.
The use of natural products for seasoning and treatment / washing of the rind is allowed.
Wax or plastic crust treatments are not allowed.

Article 5
Additional mention
- Mention "Alpine product"
The Piedmontese Toma cheese produced and aged at an altitude of over 900 meters in the mountain areas of the municipalities envisaged by the production area may bear the mention "Alpeggio" provided that:
- the milk comes from these areas and is obtained exclusively from cows, goats and sheep kept on pasture in the period between the beginning of May and the end of October, on meadow-pasture plots of natural origin.
It is allowed to integrate the feeding of livestock; the components of the feed that make up the food integration must be chosen exclusively from those listed below: corn, barley, vegetable fats, soy, beans, field bean, protein pea, glutinized semolina, by-products of sugar processing, by-products of cereal grains, minerals, vitamins, additives allowed by current legislation. The use of ensiled fodder is excluded;
- the plots on which grazing animals are managed must be entered in a special list kept by the Control Body referred to in Article 6 below. Of these plots, the maximum quantities of milk that can be produced per animal species must be estimated, which will be taken into account with the issue of the marking authorization.
The estimate of the maximum potential in terms of liters of sustainable milk from the pastured area must be made taking into account the floristic composition, the moment of use and the type and load of the animal present.
The production of "Alpeggio" Piedmontese Toma must follow the method already indicated above with the following specifications:
- The transformation into “Alpeggio” Piedmontese Toma must take place with raw milk processing.
- The salting must be carried out dry.
- The minimum seasoning must be 60 days.

Article 6
Control structures
The controls referred to in art. 10 of the Reg. (CEE) n. 2081/92 will be carried out by the authorized control body.

Article 7
Marking elements
All forms of the Toma Piemontese DOP cheese are identified exclusively by means of a label (paper mark), bearing the logo of the Protected Designation of Origin Toma Piemontese DOP or Toma Piemontese DOP "Semigrasso" in the center and in the external circular crown of green color the writing Toma Piemontese DOP or Toma Piemontese DOP "Semigrasso". These labels are affixed, not before the conclusion of the minimum seasoning cycle, to forms deemed to comply with the requirements of this Production Regulations. The brand imprinted during the training phase is a mandatory element for the traceability of the product, as it allows to identify the producer by means of the logo and an alphanumeric code attributed to the production dairy.
All the elements useful for branding, containing the constituent logo of the Protected Designation of Origin which forms an integral part of this Production Disciplinary including the alphanumeric symbol that identifies the toll booth, are held by the Consortium in charge and are given to the rightholders .
Only following the application of the paper label can the product be marketed / released for consumption as Toma Piemontese DOP.
The paper label or portion of the same must be kept on the product intended for retail sale at the cutting counter or pre-wrapped in the store.
On the pre-packaged / portioned product, the use of a suitable indication bearing all the distinctive elements of the Toma Piemontese DOP or Toma Piemontese DOP "Semigrasso" is permitted as a substitute for the label and the brand / logo must be clearly visible with the details of the Portioning authorization issued by the Consortium.
In case the product can boast of the additional mention reported in the previous art. 5, this mention must be indicated on the label. Any standards and technical details related to the marking will be the subject of specific treatment in the specific marking regulation.
The use of food glue is allowed for the application of the label.

Article 8.
Marketing method
The cheese can be sold for consumption either whole or sliced ​​or prepackaged / portioned.

Video: Inside The Italian Factory Making Wine-Soaked Cheese. Regional Eats (July 2022).


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