We often go to buy ham or some other Iberian product and are assailed by doubts. We are clear about some concepts, such as Iberian, acorn, bait, etc., and we know that a ham from Jabugo, Guijuelo, or some other designation of origin are a guarantee of quality, but we are in the store and have trouble recognising which product will best meet our expectations.
There are some myths around the world of ham. For example, there are those who believe that the left leg is preferable to the right, but this is a completely unfounded statement. Another frequent confusion is that the ham has a higher quality than the shoulder (called paleta or paletilla). We will now show you why this is also not true.
It is clear that ham is one of the most representative products of Spanish gastronomy and culture. We can consume it for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, and it can be the difference between a good meal and a memorable one.
When it comes to buying ham, especially if you want to buy a whole piece, it is wise to stop for a moment and study the multiple options we have as consumers. For example, if we are looking for an Iberian ham, it must be considered that they are not all the same. That is why it can be very helpful for us to examine the label.
Talking about the origins of ham means going back to the first practices of food preservation. Two of the oldest techniques are salting and drying, both of which are fundamental to the preparation of this product.
Ham is an extremely versatile product with many possibilities, which allows it to be enjoyed in many ways. Although, in Spain, it is usually eaten in thin slices, either as a tapa or as a sandwich, it is also present in many dishes.