November 10, 2014

about pigs and REAL dalmatian prsut (smoke/dried/ripened ham).

The pigs still alive and growing,
but in about a month happiness comes to an end.
For the pigs that is, as than the fun starts for us humans.

Ho ho, stop for a moment.
As before the fun starts, and I mean the REAL fun of tasting a slice
(or two) of that unique delicacy I better explain a bit about the
Dalmatinski Domaci Prsut .

The whát ????

Guess I don't have to explain the word Dalmatinski (Dalmatian),
so on to the next two words than:
"Domaci", as that means Home Made, and nothing else.
And this type of Prsut (pronounced as "purshoot"),
is the unique result of a time consuming traditional process. 

This summer I discovered much so called "home made" hams, 
neatly sliced and packed, ready to enjoy the "real" Dalmatian taste.
Well, sorry to say, some of it are just good products, many however are not even copies.
From Italy, Spain, Istria, Slovenia, even Germany or Holland.
Mind you, nót from Dalmacija, and íf they are, not the real thing.
So when wanting to taste real Domaci Prsut, don't rely on fancy names.

As what makes a traditional:
Dalmatinski Domaci Prsut

First of all the pig !
As this pig has been eating dried figs, herbs, clover,
potatoes and a lot more, 
to change in quality and taste, not even growing thát much.

And when the pig stops being pig, it's time for tradition.
As everyone has his own traditional recipe for salt and spices.
Salt to extract water and conserve, spices to add to the flavour.
The hams during that process are pressed to get rid of
as much watery content as possible.
(As in the end, it must become a smoked, dried, ripened ham, right ?).

As after this step, the hams are hanged in what 's called the black kitchen.
Black indeed, from many years of smoke from wood fires.
And even the wood to create the daily amount of smoke drying,
adds a personal touch.

Lucky hams, because they are not alone, as at the same time a variety of bacon, sausages and other delicacies are hanging out,
in mild warm smoke and chilling cold dry air.
Not just a single week or so, no, for weeks and weeks and weeks. 
How long is a matter of experience, enough is never to much.

Than, as I am telling about DOMACI !, the hams keep hanging
for at least half a year.
Only touched by the winter winds, dry and cold.
And even better, the very best are like good wine, the longer they ripen, the more intense colour and flavour become.
Some even are one or two years, and those are the véry best.

In the end, as like in a good film there is a happy end,
the moment comes to slice some of it.
Colour ruby red, tending to reddish brown, and structure and taste a delicate mix of sweetness, saltiness, not even a smoky taste.
In one simple word: D.....LICIOUS !

As soon as processing starts, I'll add a series of pictures to this blog.
No pictures for vegetarians, but the animal dies after a good life,
ánd for the good cause.

Dalmatinski Domaci Prsut

And sorry to say,
but that has a quality you'll néver find in a shop or supermarket.
Better become friends with someone who is willing to share some.

Sorry again, I haven't, but I dó have some good friends :-)