When ready for consumption, Stelvio or Stilfser cheese, having matured for a minimum of sixty days, is cylindrical with flat or almost flat sides and a straight or slightly concave heel. A cheese measures as follows: between eight and ten kilograms in weight, with a diameter of between 36 and 38 cm and a height of between 8 and 10 cm. The fat content in dry matter is at least 50 % and the moisture content does not exceed 44 %. The rind must be of a yellow-orange to orange-brown colour. The texture of the cheese is compact, pliable and springy. It is a pale, straw yellow colour, with irregular, small to medium-sized eyes.
Stelvio or Stilfser cheese is produced in the Protected Designation of Origin area, which comprises the districts of Bolzano listed in the production specification. Specifically, the name Stelvio denotes the mountainous area of the Stelvio National Park, a well-known international tourist destination.
Proof of origin:
Every stage in the production process must be monitored and a record made of the inputs (products added) and outputs (products generated) at each stage. This, along with lists managed by the monitoring body recording the farmers, producers, ripeners and packagers, ensures the product can be traced throughout the whole chain of production. All natural and legal persons recorded in the lists may be subject to checks by the monitoring body, according to the terms of the production specification and the corresponding monitoring plan.
Method of production:
Amongst the provisions stipulated in the production specification is that the milk used to produce Stelvio or Stilfser must be cow's milk. During the summer grazing period in Alpine pastures, the cows must be fed on fresh grass, and when stabled, they must be fed mainly on hay and silage up to a maximum of 15 kg per head. If necessary, the milk may be lightly skimmed to regulate the fat content to between 3,45 and 3,6 %. Calf's rennet is added to the milk for processing at a temperature of 32-33 °C. The time it takes for the milk to curdle ranges between 20 and 27 minutes, after which the cheese curds are broken. Once broken to the desired size, the curds are stirred and then pressed, after which the rounds are set aside in a controlled environment until the acidity reaches the right level. Salting is carried out by immersing the rounds in brine. They are then left to mature in suitable conditions on wood boards. Cattle rearing, milk storage and the successive stages of processing, coagulation, maturing, and packing the whole rounds must all be carried out within the area defined in point 4.3 in order to guarantee traceability and control and to maintain consistency of product quality.
The quality and specific characteristics of this cheese stem mainly from the type of vegetation found in high mountain areas, which is the animals' staple diet, and from the precise method of production.
Stelvio or Stilfser cheese, traditionally produced within the area defined in the product specification, has retained over time the specific traits shaped by the Alpine environment in the Stelvio-Stilfser mountain park, where the bulk of production takes place (at an altitude of between 500 and 2 000 metres). The climate conditions and even soils of the Alto-Adige Alpine area influence the nature of the feedstuff given to cattle and of the cheese produced.
Environmentally-conscious pasture management has created the conditions to support this floral abundance. Some historical texts describe the Alpine pasture grasses (marbl and madaun) that helped improve the quality of the milk produced.
Maturing Stelvio or Stilfser cheese is an essential and specific stage in the production process which is carried out on wood boards. The traditional method of processing is used, whereby the whole rounds are turned and the surfaces are washed with a weak saline solution at least twice a week. During the first two or three weeks of maturing, local microflora are added to the saline solution used to wash the cheese, which is made up of various strains of aerobic bacteria of the Arthobacterium subspecies and of the Brevibacterium breed. The particular strains used during this stage give the characteristic yellow-orange-brown colouring of the cheese surface, as well as other organoleptic features (aroma and taste) characteristic of Stelvio or Stilfser cheese. This colouring is natural and stems from the proliferation of these strains of local bacteria. The composition of this mixed culture is unique and exclusive.
Reference: The European Commission
Calories in different varieties and various types of cheeses
The number of calories in various types of cheese is very similar when you compare your cheese to a similar types of cheese.
For example, almost cheeses that are similar to Cheddar cheese have around 400 calories per 100g
If the Stelvio cheese is not listed below, select a similar type of cheese from the list below to get a rough idea for the number of calories in Stelvio cheese.
The calorie lists are sortable by clicking the up and down arrows in the heading columns
|Cheese type||Calories per 100g|
|Queso blanco cheese||310|
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