Prosciutto di Parma

PianconeProsciutto di Parma - The Cult of Ham True Italian prosciutto is one of the finest cured meats available, made from the hind leg of a pig, which is boned and cured with salt before aging for one to three years. The best ones come from Parma and Friuli; the Parma hams are a bit nutty and gamey, while the San Daniele hams from Friuli are fruitier.

Pigs raised for Piancone prosciutto are fed a diet that includes the whey leftover from Parmigiano cheese-making, and genuine Italian prosciutto is protected by a denomination of origin; laws dictate the standards for prosciutto makers and stipulate that the hams must be made from Italian pigs according to a prescribed technique. The rind of each Piancone Prosciutto di Parma is stamped with a ducal crown, which attests to the authenticity of the prosciutto. Prosciutto has long been considered an Italian delicacy, and records indicate that this dry-cured ham was among the provisions given to the Roman army circa 400-300 B.C.
Prosciutto di Parma - The Cult of Ham
Like most cured hams, prosciutto is best when sliced paper-thin. True connoisseurs prefer prosciutto sliced on a hand-cranked slicer that cuts fine, even slices. Prosciutto is the general Italian word for the cut of pork that becomes ham—the cured stuff is called Prosciutto Crudo; the deli-style ham is Prosciutto Cotto. Generally Prosciutto Crudo is served as antipasti, wrapped around breadsticks or cubes of melon or tucked into a Panini sandwich. It also makes appearances as a pizza topping and ingredient in pasta dishes.