WSVN — You can pinch it. Stretch it. And stuff it.
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "It's National Cheese Day, and it's important to know that cheese can enhance your life."
Any way you look at it, cheese is here to please.
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "Do you like cheese?"
CHEF DENA MARINO: "I love cheese!"
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "Who doesn't like cheese?"
DENA MARINO: "A lot of people."
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "Really? That's so shocking!"
To celebrate National Cheese Lover's Day, we made our way to MC Kitchen, a new restaurant in the Design District.
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "What are we going to be making today?"
DENA MARINO: "We're going to be making fresh mozzarella and fresh burrata."
Chef Dena Marino made some time for some cheese and wine. The chef really made the cheese. I mostly whined.
DENA MARINO: "You will be physically pulling the cheese yourself with your hands. You, like with these two hands."
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "Creating! What's the secret to this? Pulling of one's cheese?"
With mozzarella, you pour hot, heavily salted boiling water over curd. That's to melt it. Lightly stir together to give it a smooth texture, then stretch it, baby!"
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "That's impressive. Happy Cheese Day."
To finish it off, roll and pinch it.
DENA MARINO: "Just try to tuck a piece and make a ball. Is it too hot?"
DENA MARINO: "That's it! Perfect."
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "Yours were better."
DENA MARINO: "That's perfect."
SHIREEN SANDOVAL: "I go like that?"
DENA MARINO: "Now pinch it off."
Voilà: mozzarella! Next: burrata, which is basically cheese stuffed inside mozzarella. You'll need heavy cream, which the chef secretly made herself.
DENA MARINO: "You have your cheese. You make a little pocket. This is hot, you have this. When you cut open the burrata, you see that stringy goodness. So that's burrata."
Our dish was complete: mozzarella and burrata with heirloom tomatoes, basil, basil dressing and olive oil. Cheesetastic! At MC Kitchen, the chef knows her cheese.
DENA MARINO: "Burrata, which is a huge phenom now. Everyone loves and wants it. We do a modern take on it. We stuff it with a roasted butternut squash."
In the end, yeah, I cut the cheese and called it like I tasted it: cheesy goodness. Happy Cheese Lover's Day!