Time and passion, these are the two ingredients that make Culatta Emilia one of the symbols of Italian gastronomy the world over.
The processing of Culatta Emilia is pure poetry, every step part of an essential pathway.
Phase 1 First, we select our raw ingredient, relying only on Italian livestock. We use only the most precious part of the pig thigh for Culatta Emilia, which is deboned and has the femur and ‘fiocco’ removed. Then we begin the delicate and laborious processing, which is carried out strictly by hand.
First, we select our raw ingredient, relying only on Italian livestock. We use only the most precious part of the pig thigh for Culatta Emilia, which is deboned and has the femur and ‘fiocco’ removed. Then we begin the delicate and laborious processing, which is carried out strictly by hand.
The branding is a first important guarantee that identifies the supply chain and follows the product throughout the process in an indelible way. Only after receiving this first recognition is the Culatta Emilia salted and left in the resting room for no more than 15 days. As well as the dates of production, the rind also bears the producer’s code so as to give the consumer the possibility to recognise and select their favourite.
The salt and aromas are skilfully blended. And time does the rest. The secret to Culatta Emilia is to leave its natural rind intact to ensure a harmonious curing process that makes full use of the sweet breeze coming from the Emilian Apennines.
But we know the product needs still more time. And we are in no hurry. Having been salted, rested and dried in controlled environments, the uncovered muscular part of the Culatta Emilia is covered in lard, a step that involves the skilful hands of expert butchers. The lard is a natural blend of fat, with little fibrous tissue and no impurities, and protects the muscle fibres, keeping them soft and preventing any overly quick drying.
Then it’s on to the aging process, which lasts for at least 12 months, facilitated by the climate in the area of production, which is a mixture of dry and damp, making Culatta one of the best cured meats in Emilia.
The key moment in the long aging process is the pricking, an ancient tradition that involves careful olfactory analysis carried out using a typical horse bone needle. This is done in order to verify the perfume and fragrance of the Culatta and taste its quality. Carried out only by expert artisans, this is the final stamp.