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ITALIAN CURED MEATS
Considered to be one of the finest Italian sausages, mortadella is also the largest with a diameter that may reach 45 cm/18 inches. It has a smooth texture and a fairly bland flavour. It is usually eaten in sandwiches or as an antipasto, but may also be added to risottos or pasta sauces shortly before the end of the cooking time.
Made from belly of pork, this resembles un smoked bacon. It is very fatty and is used in a wide variety of dishes, particularly spaghetti alla carbonara. Smoked pancetta is also available.
This salted, air-
Is a leaner prosciutto with a very distinctive flavour that is produced in Friuli. Prosciutto cotto is a cooked ham, often flavoured with herbs. Prosciutto is traditionally served with melon or figs as an antipasto, but is also used in veal dishes, risottos and pasta sauces.
Salami are all made from pork, but there is an almost infinite variety of types which vary according to how finely or coarsely the meat is minced, the proportion of lean meat to fat, the seasoning and spices and length of drying time.
Some of the best known varieties are salame milano, salame sardo, a hotly spiced sausage from Sardinia, salame napoletano, flavoured with black and red pepper, salame fiorentina, a coarse-
Most Italian sausages are made from pork, but both venison and wild boar are sometimes used.
There must be hundreds of different varieties from every region of the country.
Cotechino is a large, lightly spiced sausage, weighing about 1 kg. It is usually boiled and served hot with lentils or beans.
Luganega is a mildly spiced, long, coiled sausage that is sold by the metre.
Zampone is a pig's trotter stuffed with minced pork. Traditionally, it is boiled, sliced into rings and served with lentils. It is one of the classic ingredients of bollito misto.
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