A word that covers a range of semi-soft table cheeses (cow and sheep) used for pizza, salads, etc. One popular variety is cacio di Roma. To many in central Italy cacio simply means 'cheese' (cacio is a Latin derivation, while the more common formaggio comes from Greek).
Cacio a forma di limone, a distinct sheep's milk cheese flavoured with lemon zest, from the Marche's Metauro valley in Pesaro-Urbino province is in the Slow Food Presidium.
Cacio di Pienza Bianco or Rosso: sheep cheese from the Tuscan hills; the rosso or red version has a crust that has been smeared with tomato concentrate.
Caciotta Sutina is a fresh cheese made in Friuli with herbal hints, often served in salads or with grilled slices of polenta.
Caciotta is a stretched-curd fresh cheese from Sicily, made from raw cow milk and modeled by hand (sometimes into animal shapes or ainuzzi). It has a fresh taste and is often served with antipasti. In Campobello di Licata they make a caciotta al vino that matures soaked in Nero d'Avola wine.
Image by Christine Boose