Smoking, Salting, and Survival: The Story of Fiore Sardo, Sardinia’s Treasured Cheese

Fiore Sardo is a traditional cheese from the island of Sardinia, located off the coast of Italy. The history of Fiore Sardo dates back to the Bronze Age, when the Sardinians first began to domesticate sheep and produce cheese.

sardinian sheeps

The Sardinians came up with a special way of making cheese by smoking it over juniper branches. This added a unique flavor and smell, while also extending its shelf life. As a result, the cheese became a significant part of the Sardinian cuisine and was highly prized for trading.

fiore sardo smoking process

In the Middle Ages, outsiders often invaded Sardinia and stole the island’s sheep and cheese. To safeguard their cheese, the Sardinians developed new ways of production and preservation. They used salt and created hard cheeses like Fiore Sardo.

fiore sardo

Fiore Sardo is now one of Italy’s best cheeses and is safeguarded under the European Union’s Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) status. It’s still made using traditional techniques, and its smoky, salty taste and crumbly texture are beloved ingredients in various Sardinian dishes.

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