RAW TUSCAN HAM DOP
PDO Tuscan Ham is a Tuscan cured and cured product, obtained from the processing of fresh legs of Italian heavy pigs, belonging to the Large White, Landrace and Duroc breeds or from other breeds considered compatible.
The pork legs are refrigerated and subsequently trimmed with an arched cut that leaves a fleshy frame such that, when completed, it does not protrude more than 8 cm from the head of the femur. We continue with the removal of the foot, rind and internal fat in the thigh with a "V" cut to facilitate the penetration of the salt. The salting is carried out with the dry method, with the use of salt, pepper and natural flavors; it must have a duration sufficient to ensure good dehydration. Then we proceed to the "sugnatura" which consists in coating the uncovered part of the pulp with a mixture consisting of suet, wheat flour or rice, salt, pepper and natural flavors. The seasoning period, from salting to marketing, must not be less than 10 months for hams weighing between 7.5 and 8.5 kg and 12 months for hams weighing more than 8.5 kg. The Tuscan DOP raw ham to be used for slicing and packaging must have matured an additional two months of seasoning, i.e. at least 12 months if weighing between 7.5 and 8.5 kg, and at least 14 months if weighing more to 8.5 kg. A fire mark is affixed to the hams deemed to conform to the characteristics prescribed for the PDO.
Appearance and flavor
The Tuscan DOP raw ham is characterized by a rounded shape, arched on the top, with a weight that varies between 8 and 9 kg. The color of the slice varies from bright red to light red, with little presence of inframuscular fat. The flavor is delicate, with the right flavor and the aroma is characteristic, deriving from seasoning.
The production area of PDO Tuscan Prosciutto falls within the entire territory of the Tuscany region. The pigs used for production must be born, raised and slaughtered in the territories of the Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, Marche, Umbria, Lazio, Tuscany regions.
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The history of PDO Tuscan raw ham has centuries-old origins, dating back to the Etruscan era. Already at the time of Charlemagne, in fact, there were rules for the processing of pigs. However, it was around the fifteenth century, under the Medici, that the production of ham was regulated in all its phases, with rules still applied today which may well be called a sort of disciplinary ante litteram. Also in the 15th century, the Officers of Grascia, a Florentine magisterium in charge of supervising the application of the "fair price", were instructed to supervise compliance with the production rules.
The whole DOP Tuscan Raw Ham can be kept in a cool place, taking care to cover the part started with an aluminum foil or a transparent film. PDO Tuscan Raw Ham can be eaten on its own, but it also goes very well with PDO Tuscan Bread, salt-free; it can also become an ingredient for the preparation of delicious dishes, such as the "Tuscan rose salad", with a mixture of radicchio and ricotta whipped with aromatic herbs.
The product is marketed in the typology of Tuscan raw ham PDO. It is sold whole, with bone or boneless, sliced or sliced, loose or after packaging in suitable containers or wraps for properly sealed food.
The climate of the region has influenced the trimming technique of Tuscan DOP raw ham which is wider, in the shape of a "V", to facilitate the penetration of the salt. The savory taste that distinguishes it is a characteristic not only due to salt but also to the use, during salting, of typical Tuscan essences and natural aromas such as garlic, rosemary, juniper and myrtle.
Stuffed au gratin potatoes
Tuscan raw ham
The potatoes au gratin with Tuscan raw ham can be a second dish or a rich appetizer: fragrant and rustic, they are also perfect for a picnic!
INGREDIENTS FOR 8 PEOPLE
potatoes (large and elongated)
Tuscan raw ham
Parmesan cheese grated
Wash the potatoes and blanch them for 5 minutes in salted boiling water. Drain them and cook them in a preheated oven at 180 ° C for 15 minutes until, by pricking them with a fork, they are not soft.
Cut them in half lengthwise and dig them out by removing part of the pulp (be careful not to damage the skin!).
Fry the chopped onion in a pan with 50 g of butter, add the raw Tuscan ham, minced, and the potato pulp, previously passed in a potato masher. Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, salt and pepper.
Arrange the potatoes dug on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, fill them with the mixture of freshly prepared ham, sprinkle them with a mix of Parmigiano Reggiano and breadcrumbs and, finally, pour the remaining butter, melted.
Grate the stuffed potatoes in the preheated oven at 200 ° C for about 10 minutes and serve hot.
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