A typical cheese from Basilicata, perhaps the most typical, is the Caciocavallo Podolico. It is a particular cheese that is produced only with whole milk from the cows of the Podolica breed.
In fact, the breeding of the Podolica cow is widespread throughout most of Basilicata. This breed of cow, apparently originated from Ukraine, and was introduced following the barbaric invasions. In winter, this breed adapts very well to the outdoor life and low temperatures, even giving birth to calves in the snow. The Podolica cow gives a milk with excellent organoleptic qualities, very particular and of excellent quality, rich in fats and proteins suitable for cheesemaking….which is why it is used to produced the Caciocavallo.
The Caciocavallo Podolico of Basilicata is characterized by its rounded shape, a smooth and thin crust, which thickens during ripening. The dough, soft and uniform, of straw yellow colour, is already excellent to eat after just three months of maturation.
With the passage of time, the dough becomes harder, with layers. The taste, which is sweet at first, becomes spicy and delicate after a while, soaking in all the aromas and fragrances from the wild herbs which the Podolica cows fed on in the pastures. The cheese becomes perfect around three years.
The Caciocavallo Podolico of Basilicata is a cheese that lends itself to prolonged maturing. Especially the large sizes (from 4 to 8 kg), which achieve perfection even at four, five years of refinement. In this case the taste offers an extraordinary complexity, a range of aromas that only a milk of excellence such as that of the wild Podolian animals can guarantee.