If you have a good Iberian ham at home, it is best to start enjoying it as soon as possible. But if you are waiting for a special occasion to open it and enjoy it with family or friends, you may be wondering how to keep it once started. Well, at jamondePataNegra.com we want to help you, that’s why we share with you all our wisdom and passion for ham to explain how to properly maintain this product. And it is difficult to resist such a delicacy for a long time.
Parties and celebrations are the perfect occasion to get a good leg of Iberian ham. This gastronomic delight that very few can resist is rich in iron, zinc, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, vitamin B1, B2, B3 and B6 and other vitamins of group D. In addition to these nutritional virtues, it is a product Indispensable for gourmet palates and it can also get us out of trouble in mass meetings with assured success. If you decide to invest in both a whole leg and vacuum-sliced envelopes, you should know that they cannot be preserved in any way. Experts in the art of the knife provide us with the keys to preserve it optimally.
Remove any packaging, paper, plastic or tissue that surrounds the ham. Remember that Iberian ham is still “alive” in your home, maturing until it is consumed. Store it in a cool, dry place, safe from direct sunlight if you are not going to open it for a while. Preferably hung and without contact with other surfaces.
Especially at the beginning of the cut, the ham has an abundance of bacon, the yellow exterior is not consumed, the white if you like it, you have to reduce it until you find the first grain of meat. This bacon is aromatic, tasty and delicately smooth. The pinnacle of animal fat. If you are not going to consume it right away, keep it wrapped in aluminum foil in the refrigerator to cook or make toasts for days to come. When the ham is finished, it will evoke its aroma and flavour so much that you’ll be glad you didn’t waste it.
If you think you are going to stop cutting ham for a long time, before it ends up drying out and has to be thrown away, it is better to slice it, separate it into portions and find an establishment where it can be vacuum packed.
Avoid drying out the ham so you don’t have to waste the first slice of the day. To do this, use the outer coating fat that you removed when cleaning the ham. Placed on its surface, it will prevent its contact with the air and will nourish it with fat. You can fix it with toothpicks to make sure it sticks. If it takes days to continue cutting, scrub it occasionally to increase your greasiness with it. Make sure the entire cutting surface is well covered with the bacon first so oxygen does not dry out.
In ham cutting competitions, among other things, the weight of each portion is valued. Good cutters achieve impeccably presented dishes with only 100 grams of ham. Try very thin slices, almost transparent, the ham will spread much more and taste better. The ham, to be tasted in optimal conditions, must be cut into very thin slices, this is very important, since even a ham of the best quality will lose in the tasting if the slices are too thick.
If you follow our advice, almost all ham is “sliceable”. Take care to make the cutting surface straight and skirt the bone properly to allow easy access to the lean areas around it with the knife. Avoid having to turn into taquitos what could have been some very tasty slices of Iberico.
Carve slices half ham, half fat in the areas with the greatest abundance of it and mix them with the others on the plate. Do not delve into them only in the lean, as you will lose the recommended straight cut surface and give up the pleasure of exquisite bites. Remember that bacon is one of the secrets of Iberian pork and one of the reasons for how healthy it is as a food due to its richness in oleic fats, such as olive oil. Never give up on the healthiest and most beneficial animal fat out there.
If the consumption of your ham is not going to be quick, never peel it completely. Do this as the cut surface progresses. The skin and the fat that it would remove prevents them from hardening and their sides from being wasted by contact with the air.
Always try to carve the amount of ham that you are going to consume. If you have any leftovers, cover it with a plate or in aluminum foil to prevent it from burning and keep it at room temperature for the next day.
When the ham is finished, take the bone to a butcher and ask him to chop it up. Or do it yourself with a small hand saw. Use the pieces you need for the broth and store the rest in the freezer so it does not get rancid. The adhered slices of ham and the substance of its inner pith will provide your dishes with that magical touch that only Iberian products can give.