No Italian dessert would be complete without Mascarpone. The thick, double or triple cream soft cheese with a milk fat content as high as 75%, from the Lombardy region of Italy.
In truth, Mascapone is barely a cheese. It’s more like thickened cream that’s on its way to becoming butter. Its texture ranges from smooth and creamy to almost buttery and it’s so simple to make, that many people make their own at home.
But it’s that small transition from cream, to almost cheese that makes Mascarpone an irreplaceable ingredient in cooking. It works equally well in both sweet and savoury dishes, enhancing the overall flavour of a dish without overwhelming it. It’s essential to classic desserts such as Tiramisu but is just as charming served simply with fruit. It tempers strong flavours such as anchovies and is sometimes mixed with stronger cheeses such as Gorgonzola to create a lighter flavour.
If kept sealed, Mascarpone can usually be stored for up to 2 months in the fridge or longer in the freezer. Freezing does however result in some loss of texture and frozen Mascarpone is best reserved for cooking.