Designer Meats

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Coppa: A flavorful product made with whole pieces of pork, usually sliced from the pig's neck or jowls, that aren't ground before being put into casings. The coppa is cured for 18 days and then hung to dry for three to four weeks. The end result is a dark, rich meat that is best served thinly sliced alongside other meats on a charcuterie plate.

Guanciale: Similar to bacon or pancetta in flavor and texture, guanciale is the dried and cured cheek or jowl of a pig. Unlike coppa, it can be eaten much sooner and requires less curing and drying time.

Salami: Not to be confused with salumi, which is another term for Italian cured meats. Salamis are a group of hard, air-dried sausages that are boldly flavored, usually with garlic and whole peppercorns, and which will keep for several years if uncut. While the most traditional and popular salamis are Italian, such as Genoa or Milano salami, there are variants from other countries as well.

Soppressata: Similar to salami but more rustic, soppressata's meat and fat aren't as finely ground and the result is larger chunks of creamy fat suspended in the sausage. Like pepperoni and salami, soppressata is hung at room temperature (around 85 degrees) for 12 hours after the mixture of meat, fat and seasonings is put into the casings along with a healthy dose of Bactoferm. This allows "good" bacteria to form, which keeps the meat safe and well preserved while it dries, usually at a reduced temperature of 60 degrees for two to three weeks.

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