Culatello of zibello: how to prepare it and where to buy it

As you know by now, || |102Vailo is a site wheretalks about diets but also abouthealthy eating|| |107 e per questo motivo, oggi abbiamo deciso di parlare di qualcosa di particolarmente gustoso.

For many of us, the knowledge of this cured meat, which I will now talk about in a more than exhaustive way, is in name only. For others, however, even the name that I will now give is rather unknown: culatello di zibello.

And what a pity that you have never heard of, but even more eaten this nutritious and proteinic delight.

The culatello di zibello does not have very ancient origins, until the end of the 19th century we have no mention either in the works of historians or in those of local scholars.

Probabilmente sembrava piuttosto volgare utilizzare, per quei tempi, il termine “culatello”.

D'Annuzio, however, broke the censorship in 1891 and in the Panzini dictionary of 1905 it was finally included among the gastronomic specialties.| ||120

Vediamo insieme, allora, di che si tratta.

What it is about

Culatello is one of the noble Italian cured meats. This is because the technique ofproduction of culatello, as well as its processing, are very long and very delicate.

We are speaking, in fact, of a salami that it is prepared with the thigh nut, which is the most valuable part of the pig precisely because it is rare.

Precisely for this reason, many pieces of the year never arrive on the market, only a few thousand, even if in great demand and much celebrated.

Let's say that the original one needs to be processed completely by nose, without any refrigeration system for the seasoning.

If you follow the traditional techniques, which are very very long, the product arrives pure and very valuable.

After the seasoning period, the culatello looks like a pretty big pear, with a layer of fat right in the convex part, where the string goes to rete.

When it is cut it is homogeneous red and has the smell and taste of the wine, where it was wet before being exhaled seasoned evenings, with honeyed and spicy notes then in the aftertaste.

How to prepare it

Do you have in mind how it can be prepared and how long it takes for culatello di zibello?|| |153

Non credo proprio, quindi proprio per questo mi piace spendere qualche parola per spiegarvi come funzioni il culatello e come sia difficile e lungo il periodo di preparazione di un salume così pregiato.

Let's talk about the period of seasoning. It all starts with the pork nut, as already mentioned, which is dry-salted by hand for a period ranging from one day to six days. When the moment of salting ends, the nut of the thigh is stuffed into pork casings and tied with string.

After dripping, which lasts for a week, and drying which lasts from one to two months, you go for the seasoning which goes from 10 to 14 months.

In suitable rooms, with an ever present recirculation of the air and a maximum temperature of 17 degrees, the culatelli DOP are produced.

The lower Parma area is the PDO place par excellence, that area of ​​the Po Valley most suitable for this long and complicated process for such a valuable product.

It could also be interesting to talk about how to eat it. Of course it can be eaten raw, sliced, and you will discover how good and tasty it can be.

But it can also be cooked. Here is a recipe for a dish that particularly struck me for its versatility, which is a bundle of apple and culatello, a very interesting appetizer or snack due to the combination of flavours.

The ingredients for 8 bundles are:

  • 300 grams of fuji apples
  • 460 grams of puff pastry (already ready)
  • 100 grams of finely chopped culatello
  • 50 grams of orange juice
  • 50 grams of chopped hazelnuts
  • 50 grams of cane sugar
  • 1 egg for brushing

Cut the apples into cubes and in the meantime melt the brown sugar in a saucepan by adding the orange juice. When it is blended, throw in the apples and let it soften for 15 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the chopped hazelnuts to the mixture.

Cut the puff pastry into squares of 15 cm per side and add the thinly sliced ​​culatello, add a part of the apple mixture and brush the edges with the egg to glue the square of puff pastry that closes the filling (as for a ravioli). Close the bundle in half then and brush the puff pastry on top to make the crust.

Bake for about 12 minutes at 220 degrees.

Culatello di zibello party

Every year, in Zibello in the province of Parma, home of the DOP culatello, the Culatello Festival takes place, this year in its 32nd edition. Every year for 4 days the festival hosts starred chefs who use culatello for traditional and innovative recipes, there are food stands that cook culatello and international guests.

Street artists and themed markets close the circle of these 4 days completely dedicated to the king of cured meats of the lower Parma area.

Culatello di zibello price

The price of culatello di zibello, as you could guess, is not low at all, especially if we are talking about culatello DOP, the one for which no industrial plants are used for maturing, which can cost around 90 euros per kilo. A 4-kilo culatello, which is about the weight of the traditional pear-shaped culatello tied by a string net, costs around 360 euros.

It is clear that, when you decide to switch to a less valuable product, it is possible to reach the cost of 80-100 euros but it is certainly one of those semi-industrial products that do not have the DOP mark.

Let us speak, as I wrote to you previously, of only 50,000 culatello dop, produced a year in the lowland area.

But the experience to be had with a product like culatello is clearly the experience of a good and state-of-the-art culatello. Here we always talk about fresh and good products, about quality at the expense of quantity.

We must know what we eat, we must be able to understand which product we are eating and also eat little, but eat it fresh and good. We are not for chemical crap, we are not for industrial products, we are for things done right.

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