Still more on Lardo
- I haven't had any apparent success in convincing people that Boccalone Lardo is a near-perfect trail food. High calories (250+ cal.oz.), very stable on trail and delicious. Curing was developed long before refrigerators and a traditionally cured product like prosciutto or lardo is great on trail.
From NYT comes this story about the Carrara marble region in Italy that includes a description of the Italian original of the domestically-produced Lardo I carry:.. the tiny village of Colonnata offers an exquisite version of one of Italy’s most misunderstood charcuterie products, lardo. Indeed, though much of that local marble will be shipped around the world, some will remain in the area, molded into the tubs in which the lardo is cured.
A luscious, delicate product made from the back fat of pigs, lardo di Colonnata bears an uncanny resemblance to the marble in which it is produced. Though it may suffer from an image problem — to unknowing ears, the word “lardo” can evoke a host of unappealing images — when it’s shaved thinly into diaphanous ribbons and allowed to melt into slices of warm Tuscan bread, the resulting panino becomes a contender for one of the world’s great sandwiches.
A legally protected, geographically designated product, lardo di Colonnata hasn’t exactly flooded the global market. In fact, there are currently fewer than a dozen producers of lardo di Colonnata, according to Anna Giannarelli, who together with her husband, Sandro Bertolucci, runs Lardo di Colonnata di Giannarelli out of a small yellow house on the rugged mountain ridge opposite Mr. Vanelli’s makeshift sculpture studio.
Lifting the lid of one conca, Ms. Giannarelli explained the process of curing lard. Alternating layers of lard and seasoning are stacked until the [marble tub] is full. “A tub like this can contain about 300 kilograms of lardo and about 150 kilograms of salt,” she said, gesturing to a waist-high conca. (The 300 kilograms would be more than 650 pounds.) “Then we let it rest for six months.”
Link to full article:
It can be hard to find. It used to be sold online, but now I just see it as part of a collection of products. I get mine at the small Boccalone outlet in San Francisco's Ferry Building. I gather some gourmet grocery stores also carry it.
I thought this appropriate to balance out our vegan discussion. Hike your own hike, everyone.
John Curran Ladd
1616 Castro Street
San Francisco, CA 94114-3707