Cheddar cheese isn’t the type of cheese one usually thinks about when you think about pizza. Instead, most people immediately think about mozzarella. That gooey, stringy, creamy, and fresh white cheese is typically used on pizza. So why are we writing a blog on Cheddar Cheese? Glad you asked! Cheddar cheese brings all kinds of flavors to pizza that mozzarella cannot. At Ultimate California Pizza, we strive to create pizzas that produce big, bold flavors, and cheddar cheese helps us do that! Let’s explore cheddar cheese.
What is Cheddar Cheese? Cheddar is the most widely purchased and eaten cheese in the world. It is a hard and natural cheese with a slightly crumbly texture. It takes anywhere from 9 to 24 months to mature properly and is always made from cow’s milk. Natural cheddar ranges from white to pale yellow in color, but most modern cheddars have a manually added yellow-orange color. Cheddar cheese originated sometime during the 12th century in the Somerset region of England in the village of Cheddar. Cheddar Gorge, on the edge of the village, contains several caves. Those caves provided the ideal humidity and steady temperatures for maturing cheese. It became extremely popular with English nobles and was featured at many royal banquets over the centuries. If you want to dive more into how cheese is made, check out this blog post.
Young cheddar cheese is very mild, creamy, and smooth. Aged cheddars take on a nuttier, crumbly, and sharp profile. The cheese develops a tangy finish, earthy notes, and even some salt-like crystals through the aging process, contributing to the depth of flavors this cheese offers.
But back to the pizza part. Cheddar doesn’t handle the high heat well. It tends to liquefy more than melt. Because of that, most people don’t think about using it on pizza. But, cheddar is very popular in a lot of cheese blends. Because of the lower elasticity, it does not blister as easily as mozzarella cheese. Cheddar adds flavors that other cheeses lack. The tangy, nutty, and earthy tones are not easy to replicate without cheddar cheese.
At Ultimate California Pizza, we have added cheddar cheese to 5 of our pizzas, one of our subs, several salads, and our Tijuana Flatbread.
Of course, we added cheddar to our Ultimate 4 Cheese pizza (homemade red sauce, mozzarella, cheddar, Monterey jack, and provolone). It makes sense that we would create a pizza with the most popular natural cheeses. If you are a real cheese connoisseur, you will note that it is actually a 5 cheese pizza (hint Monterey jack).
Cheddar may not be a traditional cheese used in Mexican foods, but it has made its mark in Tex-Mex. That is why when we created the Mexicali pizza (homemade fire-roasted salsa, mozzarella, cheddar, ground beef, green peppers, red peppers, yellow onions, crumbled corn tortilla chips, jalapenos, and topped with lettuce, tomato, and sour cream on the side), cheddar was a logical addition. Taking cues from our sister restaurant www.nachohippo.com, this pizza takes the best flavors of Tex-Mex and puts the Ultimate California Pizza spin on it.
The combination of cheeses in our Big Surf pizza (homemade red sauce, mozzarella, cheddar, Swiss, pulled chicken, hickory-smoked crumbled bacon, red onions, and mushrooms) is a fantastic compliment to the other toppings used for this creation. Mozzarella gives a salty flavor, Swiss contributes a sweet, almost nut-like flavor, and of course, the cheddar provides the sharpness and tang. Meanwhile, the onions offer sweet and earthy, a smokiness from the bacon, and the sweet yet salty and fragrant pleasure from the pulled chicken. We highly recommend you give this pizza a try.
We really changed things up with our Fresno pizza (homemade ranch dressing, mozzarella, cheddar, Monterey jack, mango habanero chicken, hickory-smoked crumbled bacon, and green onions). We swapped out our homemade red sauce for our homemade ranch dressing to help keep the mango habanero chicken from getting too out of control, but the flavors that the cheddar cheese offer help complement the pizza’s overall profile.
Cheddar cheese may not be the cheese you think about when you think pizza, but we think you will change your mind after you try any of these delicious pizzas. We believe in the flavors we have put together, and we know that we have created mouthwatering options for even the pickiest people.
Check out our online menu to view the other items that include cheddar cheese here: https://ultimatecaliforniapizza.com/ucp-menu/