These videos provide a behind-the-scenes look at some of the most used ingredients in Italian cooking...Parmegiano Reggiano, also known as Parmesan cheese, Olive Oil and commercial pasta.
Once you've seen how these products are made, you'll have a much greater understanding - and appreciation - for the expertise and skill that is involved in producing these hugely popular culinary products.
How It's Made: Parmesan Cheese (5:12 min.)
Did you know that each large wheel of Parmesan cheese uses a half a ton of milk? Like fine wine, this is a very carefully regulated Italian industry. Authentic Parmesan cheese is made in very select regions of Italy, (the towns of Parma and Reggio Emelia) and each manufacturer runs at peak capacity to fulfill the enormous world-wide demand for this popular Italian product. True Parmegiano Reggiano cheese is produced with great care and allowed to age to perfection before being literally branded with a stamp of authenticity and sent out into the world. This video, from the folks at National Geographic, takes you inside a dairy in Montova, Italy to see exactly how this famous pasta topping is made.
How It's Made: Olive Oil (4:46 min.)
Like sea salt and fresh ground pepper, high quality olive oil is one of the essential elements in any modern kitchen. There are a wide variety of olives, each with its own flavor, that can be combined to create specific blends. This video shows how modern-day technology uses the best practices of tried and true harvesting and pressing techniques to carefully collect and produce the highest quality available. From cold pressed extra-virgin olive oil to standard grade for frying, this video explains it all.
How It's Made: Commercial Pasta (5:29 min.)
Ever wonder how those noodles in the box get their shape? Or how lasagna noodles get those ruffle edges? All is revealed in this look inside the world of commercially made pasta. Pasta made with Semolina (derived from durham wheat) and water is the basis for most of today's commercial pasta. Various shapes are extruded, rolled, cut and dried and then carefully bagged by computer-controlled machines at surprisingly fast speeds to keep the world supplied with this ever-popular culinary delight.