Fiore Sardo DOP is a hard paste sheep cheese typical of all Sardinia, an, in particular, of the provinces of Cagliari, Nuoro, Oristano and Sassari.
Sheepherding in they region dates back to before 1000 BC and Fiore Sardo has very ancient origins: it is cited in some historical documents of the end of 1700, and it was exported in markets of the Italian West Coast (Livorno, Napoli and Genova).
The origin of the name is not certain: some say that it comes from the fact that the rennet used originally came from the thistle flower. More likely, the name derives from the fact that the wooden boxes that were used in the production of the cheese had a flower carved in them. This flower carving shows on the cheese skin, granting it the name of Fiore Sardo (Sardinian Flower).
It is a raw paste cheese made with sheep milk. It s made with the untreated milk coming from one single milking. Once the rennet has been poured in, the cheese is put into moulds and they are immersed in water to make the crust thicker, harder and more resistant. It is aged for as long as six months.
Fiore Sardo is very durable a cheese and keeps its taste even if it is cut open. It is an aged cheese, thus it is highly digestible and perfect for a sportsman's diet. It is used grated to season pasta, soups or polenta. It is a good companion also for cold cuts, vegetables and red wine, especially coming from the same region like Cannonau di Sardegna.