You all know that salami is seasoned sausage, food of the Italians now cherished worldwide. However, you must wonder if you can eat uncured salami and be safe. The word ‘uncured’ attached to salami is rather misleading. The difference between curing and uncuring deals with how the meat undergoes processing to make the salami.
Two methods come in an application to preserve meat. Curing by additives and chemicals containing nitrates. This type of salami is cured and is risky to have uncooked as it contains nitrates. The other process involves processing with natural salts and herbs. As there is no risk in eating this uncooked, the USDA considers it uncured. Therefore, it is safe and secure to eat uncured salami.
What is Salami?
Salami is a naturally cured sausage prepared from fermented or air-dried meat of pork, lamb, beef, and games like duck, horse donkey, or a combination of different meat sources. Salami is fermented or salted meat encased with the wrapper from the animal intestine. The casing holds the sausage to become salami. Artificial casings are made of cellulose and collagen, which are not harmful to health.
The packing of uncured salami occurs under vacuum pressure. The modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) method is in use for packaging taking into consideration the food preservation technology.
Types of Salami
Curing of the meat particularly pork is done in many ways, although by “salami” one always, thinks of the “Italian sausage.” We would like to introduce you to a few of the salami popular around the world.
Well, we may not enumerate all of them, but below are some of the quite popular ones.
1. Cacciatore Salami
The Cacciatore salami derived its name “hunter-style” from Italy as it has good flavor and is nutrient-rich. As the name suggests, this salami is taken in the hunter’s pocket for lunch. It has mixed with very little spice having a flavor of fresh garlic and black pepper. The ingredients of Cacciatore Salami are pork/beef, cane sugar, sea salt, garlic, natural flavorings, and starter culture.
2. Pepperoni Salami
The pepperoni is an American-born salami developed from Italian cured meat. Pepperoni is a popular topping used in American-style pizza toppings. The salami has a typical sweet and smoky flavor. The ingredients are pork/beef, sea salt, spices, sugar, paprika, natural flavor, sunflower oil, and starter culture.
3. Peppered Salami
This uncured peppered salami is hand-ground pork blended with wine and pepper. It undergoes aging naturally and hand-rolled with a casing of black pepper. The ingredients are pork, sugar, sea salt, Italian spices, natural flavors, and starter culture.
4. Finocchiona Salami
The Finocchiona salami originated from the Tuscany region, Florence in the middle ages. The ingredient originally in use was alternation by fennel, as it is expensive. Fennel is also known as “Finocchio” in Italian. The toasted fennel seed produces a mouthwatering taste to the salami. A variation comes with coarser meat and a shorter drying period. The ingredients are port, fat from pork, sea salt, sugar, fennel, pepper, garlic, natural flavors, and starter culture.
5. Wine Salami
Wine salami consists of wine. It goes well with cured meat with an enhancement of flavor. There are several varieties with various combinations of spices and wine available in stores. The ingredients are pork, concentrated wine, sugar, spices, garlic, natural flavors, and acidic, starter culture.
6. Chorizo Salami
Chorizo is a Spanish-style, dry salami, containing paprika, herbs, fresh garlic, and spices. There are two kinds of this uncured salami,—Spanish and Mexican. The Spanish Chorizo is ground meat blended with spices. The manufacturer makes the Mexican type of ground meat, sold uncooked. It has a deep smoky flavor. The ingredients are pork, sugar, sea salt, spices, paprika, garlic, natural flavors, and starter culture.
7. Genoa Salami
Genoa originates from the Italian state of Genoa, and therefore the name is a derivation from it. The meat of salami is of medium grind with a heavy taste of garlic. The Genoa salami is dry, salted, spicy, and preparation of natural fermentation. Many people appreciate Genoa for its distinctive spicy taste. The ingredients of this salami are pork/beef, sea salt, spices, sugar, garlic, natural flavors, and starter culture.
8. Sopressata Salami
The soppressata salami is a creation of Italy but well adapted to the American culture. It comes in both spicy and mild types. The spicy taste is because of the addition of Calabrian red pepper and the black peppercorns for the mild flavor. Using the traditional method they mixed the meat with the spices and hung it for drying. The soppressata comes out with a fine texture and bold flavor. The ingredients of this salami are pork, sea salt, spices, sugar, garlic, natural flavors, and starter culture.
The salami was once a supplementary food served as snacks or light lunch. It has now become a part of major food, an integral part of sandwiches, pizza, and pasta. As you can cut into pieces, the recipes with salami include the use of bread, cheese, herbs, seeds, and many more kinds of ingredients and spices to suit your tongue.
With time, more and more kinds of salami with curing methods and fermentation processes are coming to the market. Many countries are adapting their salamis to the taste of the local people. In this global era, no Italian will crave and go without their most delightful salami preparation.
Now that you know you can safely eat uncured salami, you can easily buy the labeled and approved product with no worries. The uncured salami is a preparation from natural sources of salts and herbs. Enjoy your salami anywhere in the world!