Prosciutto: you’ve most likely heard of it, tasted it, or fallen in love with it. The thinly-sliced and incredibly flavorful delicacy takes its name after the Italian word for “ham.” What sets prosciutto in a league of its own, however, is the preparation. Preserved through one of the oldest methods known to man, prosciutto is not smoked or cooked; rather, is dry-cured with sea salt.
There are various types of prosciutto, distinguished by the carefully tailored techniques by which they are prepared. Let’s take a deeper dive into the different types of prosciutto, and what makes each one unique.
The Different Types of Prosciutto
Dry curing techniques juggle a few variables. Namely, the temperature in which it is prepared, the time and frequency between stages of salting, spices, the breed of pig from which the ham is derived, and even what the diet of the pig consisted of.
Prosciutto Toscano has its roots in Tuscany, Italy, where pig farming has been a lucrative occupation for centuries. Even today, prosciutto Toscano can only be given that name if the pigs were born, raised, and butchered in Tuscany.
This kind of prosciutto is lean and typically has a compact dark rind, due to the dry rub that’s made from pepper and other spices.
Prosciutto di Parma
Prosciutto di Parma is known for its incredible flavor. This is achieved by an aging process that is twice as long as other types. Prosciutto di Parma has a buttery texture and a flavor that has savory and sweet notes.
Prosciutto di San Daniele
Prosciutto di San Daniele is cured using only sea salt in the small village of San Daniele. Unique to this type of prosciutto is that the pork legs are not just salted, but they are pressed for 2-3 days to enhance the depth of flavor.
These three types of prosciutto just touch the surface of the various dry-cured hams that are being enjoyed all over the world. A slice of prosciutto is delicious on its own, though it makes a great addition to a salad, sandwiches, cheese board, and works wonderfully draped over slices of melon.
Better yet, the delicacy is often made without the cocktail of preservatives and man-made additions that are used for other cold-cuts. By adhering to ancient traditions, Italian prosciutto continues to be adored and sought out by millions. If you are looking to enjoy this delicacy, visit Bricco Salumeria & Pasta Shop.