What’s that buffalo mozzarella all about, by the way?

One of the main ingredients of a true Neapolitan pizza, as I’ve mentioned, is buffalo milk mozzarella. But why? And how did there come to be water buffalo in Italy anyway? Aren’t they more of an India/Southeast Asian kinda deal? The answer is the Crusades. Starting in roughly 1200 A.D., crusaders returning from their travails in the Holy Land began bringing back water buffalo that they found there, since not only were they easy to breed, they gave significant quantities of milk. They’ve been in Italy ever since. Their Latin name is bubalus bubalus, though Italian water buffalo are technically river buffalo. The Latin name for that particular breed of buffalo is B. bubalus bubalus, which I just love to say: beeboobalusboobalus. It’s like a jazz riff. Beeboobalusboobalus. Their milk makes darn good cheese, so good that it’s used only sparingly on real Neapolitan pizza, and then is only melted as I said, not browned. Gosh that’s a great looking picture of a Neapolitan pizza, isn’t it? Mine will be like that one day. And soon.

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