Italy produces more than 250 different types of cold cuts and sausages, some well known and widespread other less known, more niche, but equally worthy of attention and of course a taste. Italy has been the worldwide pioneer in the techniques of curing meats since ancient Roman times.
Curing is the age-old process of preserving fresh meat through salting, smoking and air-drying Italian Meats. Pork is the most common cured meat in Italy, although other meats such as beef, venison and wild boar are also cured. Each region of Italy is known for its own cured meats, known as salumi, based on local customs. Spice plays an important role in the curing of Italian Meats. Typically, Italian Meats from the South tend to be spicier than those from northern Italy.
Cured Italian Meats fall into two basic categories: cured meats that have been taken from whole cuts of meat, and cured meats that have been moulded from ground meat and stuffed into casings. Cured meat plays a prominent role in the Italian Antipasto, meaning "before the meal". An antipasto is the first course, traditionally consisting of foods such as sliced cured meats, cheeses and vegetables.
SOME OF THE EXEMPLARY ITALIAN COLD CUTS ARE:
Salsiccia diavoletta (Diavoletta Sausage)
Diavoletta Sausage is made from coarsely ground meat which is mixed with just the right amount of salt, ground chilli and fennel seeds. It has a slightly spicy peppery aroma, is an intense red colour, and feels soft and balanced in the mouth.
Pancetta is a type of bacon made of pork belly meat that has its origins in Italy. It is salt-cured and usually spiced with black pepper and similar other spices. One of the most traditional Italian Meats, this salted, spiced and dry-cured pork belly is served thinly sliced or diced for recipes. An excellent substitute for bacon, Pancetta is perhaps best known for as a key ingredient in Pasta Carbonara.
Pepperoni (Sliced Pizza / Spicy Salami Napoli)
Pepperoni is a type of Salami that is made from lean, coarsely chopped pork and beef. A quality Pepperoni should not be overly spicy, but still robustly flavoured with paprika, a mildly hot, somewhat smoky spice. Pepperoni is great as a pizza topping and in sandwiches. We also love it chunked or sliced as a snack.
“Salami Napoli” is produced everywhere in Campania, and it has many characteristics similar to Salame di Mugnano del Cardinale, amongst which, it was historically considered such high-quality merchandise that it was used to pay for professional work and eaten during celebrations. This use made it a precious good to which many precautions were dedicated to maintaining intact the flavour and genuineness of the meats. These have become with time part of the production, fumigation and ageing techniques that have been passed from father to son.
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