Allain Ducasse, one of the most celebrated French chefs today, said of Ibérico ham: “This ham is truly one of the world’s gastronomic jewels”. He serves Ibérico ham from Spain in all his restaurants.
The prestige of Ibérico acorn ham goes far back into history. As early as the first century A.D., the Greek geographer Strabo extolled the virtues of Ibérico ham. The excellent taste of Ibérico ham derives from its ascendancy. The Iberian pig still lives in its original habitat, the dehesa, a mixture of forests and meadows in south eastern Spain.
Iberian pigs feed on acorns and wild chestnuts, gars aromatic herbs and tubers, mushrooms, small insects, even snakes. Their skin is dark, legs are long, ears drooping, and long snout, help pigs survive in this environment. This diet helps pigs gain weight rapidly, mostly fat, but it consists of 5- – 60 per cent oleic acid, the same unsaturated fat fund in olive oil.
Has a smooth texture, appealing shine, bright red colour, and marbled with an intense aroma, finishing with an unusually long aftertaste. After salting and stabilizing the leg, aging takes place in temperature-controlled warehouses called curing halls.
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Writer – Hrayr Berberoglu