The milk is heated to a temperature of 37°C and inoculated with a paste of lamb’s or kid’s rennet, according to the degree of piquancy desired. Coagulation takes about 50 minutes. The resulting soft curd is cut into rough lumps and the whey is partially extracted. The curd is then milled into tiny granules and left to ripen in warm whey (45-50°C) for several hours. Next, it is drained from the remaining whey, cut into slices, and placed in water heated to a temperature of 80°C, where the stretching process begins. When the now firm curd has become sufficiently elastic to be modelled into a large pear shape, it is immersed in a brine bath for a period that can vary from 12-20 hours. The cheeses are then tied together in pairs and put in a cool, well-aired room to mature for approximately 20 days. This is the first step in the ageing process, which traditionally takes place in caves at a constant temperature, and lasts anywhere from three months to a year. Its outer rind is smooth, thin, hard and light brown in colour; the body is solid, in different gradations of straw-yellow and presents occasional cracks. Its diameter ranges from 16 to 22 cm, its height from 18 to 18 cm and its weight from 1.5 to 3 kilograms.Agnone Caciocavallo is produced in the entire Molise region, notably Upper Molise (province of Isernia).
The traditional products, local breeds, and know-how collected by the Ark of Taste belong to the communities that have preserved them over time. They have been shared and described here thanks to the efforts of the network that that Slow Food has developed around the world, with the objective of preserving them and raising awareness. The text from these descriptions may be used, without modifications and citing the source, for non-commercial purposes in line with the Slow Food philosophy.