Prosciutto di Norcia
The Prosciutto di Norcia PGI is a salted and aged sausage product obtained from the legs of heavy adult pigs in the mountainous areas of the production zone.
Method of working/Cultivation/Breeding
Salting is done in two moments using medium grain marine salt. The maturation phase takes place in rooms appropriately equipped to consent an adequate change of air. The maturation period, from the salting to the commercialising, cannot be less than 12 months
Aspect and Taste
The Prosciutto di Norcia PGI has a characteristic rounded pear shape and is classified amongst the mountain hams, the weight is usually not less than 8,5 kg; the cut slice presents itself with a colour ranging from rose to red, with a savoury aroma and taste, but not salty. The fragrance is characteristic, slightly spicy given the presence of small amounts of pepper.
The production area of the Prosciutto di Norcia PGI is located the municipal areas of Norcia, Preci, Cascia, Monteleone Spoleto, Poggiodomo, in the territories above 500 m of altitude, in the district of Perugia, in the Umbria region.
In the area of Nursine the conservation of pork dates back to the Roman era, a technique also favoured by the widespread breeding and the pastoral farming characteristic of the Prosciutto di Norcia PGI producing area. Thus, it was the introduction of these activities that allowed the rational and continuous exploitation of the land even in colder seasons. Not only, it was due to this fact that the periods of the Republic and the Roman Empire witnessed a policy of true countryside appreciation in this area of central Italy, which afterwards was also sustained by the Papal States. Thus, with time, the farmers of this area became skilful and experts in the processing and conserving of pork, which was sold salted and aged also in the neighbouring areas.
The whole Prosciutto di Norcia PGI should be kept in cool and dry places, greasing the surface to be cut with a bit of oil and recovering it with greaseproof paper. Once cut, is should be kept in the refrigerator. With a delicate taste, it is advisable to consume it in thin slices, better if eaten on its own, as an appetizer or main course. It is surely best combined with CDO wines from the region and with other typical Umbria products, especially cheeses, saltless bread and some types of seasonal fresh fruits.
The product is sold as Prosciutto di Norcia PGI. It is sold whole, in pieces, loose, vacuum-packed or sliced.
The Prosciutto di Norcia PGI differentiates itself from other hams mainly through the processing, which lasts approximately 50 days, and through the maturation that lasts almost two years.