David Downie: Guanciale: An Obituary and a Homage to Rome’s Jowl Bacon, Part 2

By Tuesday, July 26, 2011 Permalink 0

by David Downie

Click here to read Part 1

For centuries, Rome’s demand for cured hog jowl was met by hundreds of specialized pork butchers and salami makers. The first are called norcini and are both butchers and salted-pork product makers. The second, salumieri or salsamentari, do not usually get involved in the butchering of the pigs. Norcia, the mountain town in Umbria famed for its black truffles, gave its name to norcini, such as the Carilli brothers were: they came from the area. It has been the heartland of great pork and wild boar for millennia. Both animals feed on acorns from the forests that gave Umbria its name. (Umbre and variants originally meant “shady” or “dark,” as in a dark forest of oaks.)

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