Owners' Recipes • Prosciutto Cotto
Here's the second delicious installment from our owners' recipes series - home-cooked ham, from Giulia Savini from Locanda della Valle Nuova.
Giulia says: "At the beginning of the year everywhere in the Italian countryside we prepare our hams, salamis and sausages. This is my recipe for a great home-made cold cut. I usually use loin, not leg, as it gives good results; it's not very thick so the brine penetrates the meat evenly and it's easy to cut. Of course, the best results are achieved if you use very good quality organic pork."
Home-cooked ham (prosciutto cotto)
For about 1.2 kg of pork you need:
50g demerara sugar
1 pinch ground black pepper
1 juniper berry (crushed)
1 very small garlic clove (finely cut)
1 whole clove (crushed)
1 bay leaf (finely cut)
1 lovage leaf or a few celery leaves (finely cut)
Mix all the ingredients for the cure and spread evenly on the meat.
Pack in a small container that you can close tightly (better if glass, porcelain or plastic... metals can react in a funny way) and leave in the fridge for 3/4 days. The meat will release some of its juices, turn the meat every day.
Remove the meat from the brine and leave in cool water in the fridge for 12 hours (change the water 4/5 times).
Bring lightly salted water to boil, add a pinch of salt and some celery and then add the pork (there needs to be enough water to cover the meat) and boil for one hour, making sure the water level doesn't get very low. A rough cooking guide is 40 minutes per kilo (20 minutes a lb). Drain and let it cool. It keeps for 3-4 days in the fridge.