The word “salumi” (or its singular “salumi”) seems to appear more often in restaurant menus and Instagram feeds, even at some deli counters. You may be wondering exactly what salumi means, as opposed to salami or pork.
A little about the topic 101:
Salumi is a category of high quality salted meat based on pork, such as salami and prosciutto. Salumi’s definition is subjective and evolving, and producers are breaking old boundaries.
Traditionalists limit the definition of salumi to salted meat made in Italy, but others use this term to describe meat that has been preserved and produced worldwide in a variety of ways, including cooked. doing.
Emilia Romagna is the most famous Italian region for salumi, especially prosciutto, but hardened meat is produced nationwide.
Charcuterie is Salumi’s famous French cousin. This is also a variety of hardened meats made primarily from pork.
Salumi was born out of the need to preserve the meat before refrigerating and use all parts of the pork. Currently, there are many manufacturers of salumi on the market in supermarkets. (Some great, out-of-the-box brands include Olli, Gusto, Coro, Creminelli, Daniele.)
Throughout the United States, producers and food businesses are increasing their salumi games. Northern Waters Smokhaus, Duluth, Minnesota, is the destination for hardened meats featured in sandwiches. In Pittsburgh, Salty Pork Bits manufactures hardened meat that can be shipped nationwide.
“For a long time, Salumi’s options in the United States were very limited, and then slowly began importing some products from Italy,” said Cesare Casella, an Italian chef and salumi expert. Now, probably in the last five years or so, more producers have emerged. More smaller producers have emerged and are experimenting. “
Many people do not understand that salumi is a hardened product, Casella adds.
“It’s not” raw “and doesn’t need to be cooked. Like pickled cucumbers, the fermentation process makes them safe (and delicious) to eat, “he says.
The world of Salumi is vast. Just a few of its biggest hits:
Salami is the type of salami that many of us are most familiar with. In the United States, it is generally considered to have a firm texture, dry hardening, sausage style, and may be made of beef and is sold whole or sliced. It is a huge category, many types of salami are available, and within each type there are many variations that are influenced by the region.
Salami is mainly made from salted and seasoned chopped or minced meat packed in a casing, hung, hardened and dried. There are also cooked salami and soft, hardened salmis. Often you will want to remove the casing before eating salami.
Sopressata is a dry-cured pork salami that uses almost every part of the pig. Its shape is long, slightly flat and usually has some kicks from pepper, peppercorn and other spices. It can be sliced thick or thin.
Mortadella is a pink, smooth, lightly hardened and cooked salami made all over Italy. It is seasoned with a variety of seasonings and may also contain pistachio nuts. It is usually served in thin slices.
Nduja (en-DOO-ya) is from the Calabrian region of Italy and is unique in that it is a meat that can be spread hot with peppers. Often served with a knife to be applied to bread as an appetizer or snack.
Whole skeletal muscle salumi: including prosciutto, specs, guanciale
Many of these types of salumi are dry-cured with salt, seasonings and wine. They are made from the entire animal muscle and are not crushed or combined. This salumi is usually eaten as an ingredient in other dishes, sliced thinly and uncooked (although it may be cooked).
In the most perfect world, you buy these types of salumi in high turnover stores to slice and order, but you’ll also find packages near grocery stores, often high-end cheese counters and deli counters. can do.
Perhaps the best known is prosciutto, which itself is an entire category. And the most common type of prosciutto is the entire leg of salt-rubbed pork, which is cured in a cool, dark room for at least 400 days. Prosciutto is usually sold in thin slices like paper and has a salty and funky flavor, a silky texture and a delicate texture.
The Italian or Italian style spots are somewhat similar to prosciutto, but a little more lively, with seasonings and smoky, and a little more dense. You can eat it as it is or use it in a recipe.
Pancetta is essentially Italian bacon, a hardened version of pork belly, sometimes sold in cylinders, sliced or diced. It can be eaten as it is, but it is often sautéed and used in various dishes, from steamed dishes to pasta sauces and salads.
Guanciale is made from laurel leaves, pepper and juniper-flavored pork jaws. It is also usually sold in rolls and slices, and is most famously used in pasta sauces such as carbonara and amatriciana.
Coppa or capicola is from the top of the pig’s shoulder and is seasoned differently throughout Italy. It is usually very flavorful — often made of wine and bright red, with a smooth texture and fat in the best way.
What is the best way to get to know the wide world of Salumi? Taste them!
If you have a gourmet or Italian market nearby, go to the deli counter and try the samples. Remember, you can buy a quarter pound of many different things. Keep the salumi in the fridge, but cool it to room temperature (in the 60 ° F range) for the best dining experience.
Casella believes that we should all eat more salumi.
Katie Workman writes regularly about Associated Press foods. She has written two cookbooks, “Dinner Solved!”, Focusing on family-friendly cooking. And “The Mom 100 Cookbook”.She is blogging at http://www.themom100.com/about-katie-workman..She can reach at Katie@themom100.com..
Copyright 2021 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
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