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Difference Between Cheese Curds and Mozzarella Sticks?

What is the difference between cheese curds and mozzarella sticks?

Cheese is one of the greatest gastronomic pleasures I know.

I have yet to find a variety that I do not enjoy, whether soft or strong, creamy or complex when paired with a suitable wine.

All cheese is made from milk, whether it comes from a cow, a goat, a sheep, a buffalo, a camel, or another ruminant mammal.

There are so many different kinds of cheese that it’s nearly impossible to list them all. 

Today’s cheese selection is a small sample, and we’d love it if you could contribute a grain of sand and tell us which cheese is your favorite.

However, the mozzarella cheese sticks and curd cheese will be our main focus and it will be processed for you in this article.

What’s the difference between mozzarella sticks and cheese curds?

The difference between mozzarella sticks and cheese curd is that mozzarella cheese sticks are a snack made of battered or breaded mozzarella cheese. In contrast, cheese curd is not even cheese but a particular type of milk or a dairy product. Curd is not cheese in the traditional sense but rather unfermented coagulated milk with animal rennet or thistle extract. Curd is a food similar to yogurt, but its production and properties are entirely different.

The Difference Between Cheese Curds and Mozzarella Sticks
The Difference Between Cheese Curds and Mozzarella Sticks

The mozzarella cheese sticks are the ideal appetizer and can be purchased ready-made. They are crispy and delicious and can be eaten alone or with ketchup or ranchera sauce. It is made from a famous cheese found on almost all pizzas; it is a soft cheese that melts beautifully.

How are Mozzarella Cheese Sticks not the Same with Curd Cheese?

1. Origins

Origin of mozzarella

Have you ever wondered how mozzarella cheese got its name? This cheese originated in the Campania region (Naples, Capri, Sorrento, and Amalfi).

A 16th-century document mentions mozzarella cheese. A cook in the papal court wrote this document. However, there is an even older document dating from the twelfth century.

It demonstrates that the Benedictine monks of San Lorenzo in Capua used to offer a piece of cheese called Mozza or provatura’ on the occasion of religious festivities.

The Name "Mozzarella" Comes for the Italian Word "Mozzare" Which Means "To Cut".
The Name “Mozzarella” Comes for the Italian Word “Mozzare” Which Means “To Cut”.

In 811, the monks settled in Capua and founded the Monastery of San Lorenzo. Near the monastery, the city of Aversa arose, which is now famous for the production of buffalo mozzarella.

Initially, the cheese was made from cow’s milk.

A herd of buffalo was imported to Italy in the 13th century. Why the buffalo? Because Italian farmers discovered that milk was precious,

but buffaloes eat less than cows. Keeping buffaloes is less expensive than keeping cows.

Origin of the Curd Cheese

Curd is a traditional Basque-Navarrese dessert and those from Cantabria, Asturias, and La Rioja, though its exact origin is unknown.

However, we are discussing a technique discovered over 4000 years ago. And it was during those years, that animals’ dry stomachs were used to transport milk or certain foods over long distances.

 This is how people discovered that when the milk reaches a specific temperature, it undergoes a change and becomes curdled, thanks to an enzyme called renin, which is found in the stomach of ruminant mammals and causes casein coagulation. 

It is now possible to artificially produce this enzyme to make curd, and You can even purchase it in an envelope to make curd at home.

2. Preparation

Preparation of Curd Cheese

Curd is traditionally made with freshly milked sheep’s milk mixed with suckling rennet, but you can also make it with goat or cow milk.

It is customary to place an incandescent stone into the container during preparation to give it the smoked or burned flavor that it is known for. 

The milk used to make it must be pasteurized for 30 minutes at around 95 °F. It has nutritional values that are very similar to milk, but because it is thickened, digestion is much easier. 

It contains lactose, casein proteins, calcium, and vitamins. If it is made with sheep’s milk, it contains more saturated fats but has a better consistency than those made with cow’s milk.

Curd is Traditionally Made with Freshly Milked Sheep's Milk
Curd is Traditionally Made with Freshly Milked Sheep’s Milk.

How to Prepare and Serve Curds

Curd is usually eaten as a dessert and served in a clay bowl called a kaiku.

To accompany the Curd, a dash of honey or a little sugar is usually added and enjoyed along with some dried fruit. 

It also works very well when accompanied by fruit, such as apples.

We should not mix or stir the curd to taste them correctly, even if we add other ingredients. 

We must eat it from top to bottom so as not to break the natural texture of the curd and thus prevent the aromas from evaporating. 

Indeed, the curd is best known as a dessert due to its sweetness, but it can also be the perfect contrast when combined with certain salty foods, such as foie gras or anchovies, and even paired with a splash of olive oil. 

Although the best curds are homemade or artisan, today, it is a widely used product on the market in their industrial versions.

Curds Are Traditionally Served in A Clay Bowl Called a Kaiku.
Curds Are Traditionally Served in A Clay Bowl Called a Kaiku.

How to Prepare and Serve Mozzarella

Ingredients

  • Mozzarella  – 1 pound
  • Flour –2 ounces
  • Breadcrumbs – 5 ounces
  • Eggs – 2 units
  • tablespoons of water – 2
  • Dried oregano – ½ teaspoon
  • Black pepper – to taste
  • Salt to taste
  • For Mild flavor olive oil – 5.1 fluid onces

For these sticks to be crispy, it is better to prepare them overnight or in the morning if you will serve them for dinner.

  1. To begin, we cut 0.7 inches wide slices of mozzarella cheese bar. 
  1. Following the slices, we make sticks, approximately four sticks per slice.
  1. Prepare three plates or containers: one for the two eggs, one for the flour, and one for the breadcrumbs.
  1. Beat the eggs for a few seconds after adding two tablespoons of water.
  1. Mix in some dried oregano, salt, and pepper to the breadcrumbs.
  1. First, coat the mozzarella sticks in flour. Then comes the egg (drain a little), followed by the breadcrumbs.
  1. We repeat this process to ensure that the batter is uniform which will make the sticks crispier.
  1.  Pass the breadcrumbs-coated sticks through the egg again, drain, and coat with breadcrumbs again.
  1. Put the sticks in a taper and place them in the freezer for at least 6 hours. The batter will adhere to the cheese better this way.
  1. The time for freezing has passed. In a pan, heat some light olive oil (the oil should cover the sticks. If your pan is large, add more oil or use a smaller pan).
  1. Fry the sticks in batches so that the batter does not come off because they are covered in oil (something that usually happens when we cook with little oil that the batter sticks to the pan).
  1. Fry for 1.5 to 2 minutes, or until golden (try not to stick too much together, you can separate them carefully with a spoon). 
  1. After browning, place them on a plate lined with kitchen paper to absorb any excess oil.

The mozzarella cheese sticks have been prepared! Time to eat.

Mozzarella Sticks Are A Delicious, Easy to Make Snack.
Mozzarella Sticks Are A Delicious, Easy-to-Make Snack.

Frequently Asked Questions on What’s the Difference Between Cheese Curds and Mozzarella Sticks?

Mozzarella is what type of cheese?

Mozzarella is a type of Italian cheese whose name refers to how it is made, as it derives from the Italian “mozzare,” which means “to cut.” Traditionally, people used buffalo milk, but cow’s milk or combined milk is now used in addition to this dairy.

How many liters of milk are required to make one kilogram of Mozzarella Cheese?

One kilogram of mozzarella cheese typically requires 7 liters of milk.

Can you use cheese curds instead of mozzarella?

No, but you can substitute mozzarella in the absence of cheese curd due to the similarity in taste.