Now that dates are coming when we all throw the house out the window when it comes to food, there are many homes where ham enters, but how can we know if we are facing a good copy? There are many factors and indications that will help us to know if a ham is good or not, but today we are going to focus on its bacon and its marbling.
In the event that you have bought a whole piece to split it at home, when opening it, you should observe that the color of the bacon next to the leg must be golden and very bright to confirm that it is a good piece.
Given that the highest quality hams are those that come from pigs that have been raised in freedom, it is positive to find in them that characteristic fat of yellowish color in their muscles, since it indicates that the animal has moved a lot through the pastures where they are raised.
The bacon on the rest of the piece should be very soft and juicy.
If the bacon is hard or breaks easily, it may be an indication that the ham has been fed low-quality feed.
The outer bacon on the underside of the ham should be slightly wrinkled. We can test squeeze the bacon with your finger and if it enters easily, we are facing a product of enormous quality.
And what is marbling?
The grain of the ham is the interspersed white strips that are often seen in the lean of the ham. These are fat infiltrations between the muscle fibers and that help us to know if it is a 100% Iberian ham or not.
TO The higher the purity of the breed, there will be less infiltration of fat from the lean. In the 100% Iberian hams, the marbling of the fat is much smaller and finer. This type of hams usually concentrates a large grain in the center of the piece and that as we get closer to the bone it will have a Y shape. The color of its meat is intense. This is due, among other things, to the high degree of activity these pigs undergo every day. The 100% Iberian field bait pigs, living free, also exercise their muscles every day. This fat, being more infiltrated in the meat, in the final product is less visible and less appreciated.
On the contrary, the animals that They are not pure Iberian exercise their muscles less, so they have a increased fat accumulation, which is much more visual in the final product. This type of hams has a more generic grain and is distributed throughout the ham.
What are the white dots on the ham?
They are crystallizations of an amino acid called Tyrosine. These appear in some hams as a consequence of a long and restful maturation, since for this circumstance to occur, time is required.