Lomo Ibérico de Bellota

The famous Iberian black pig, popularly known as Pata Negra due to its characteristic black hoof, still wanders free in “dehesas”, an indigenous oak forest of the southern Spanish region of Andalusia. Pata Negra pig feed exclusively on fallen oak acorns, known as “bellota”, for three months prior to slaughter. This special diet of acorns, herbs and grass, along with lots of exercise, gives Iberian meat its delicate flavor and a texture. The pig fat inherits properties of foods the animal consumes and as the fat is the carrier of flavor, the Iberic meat develops wonderful flavor and a texture, the meat of Lomo Ibérico de Bellota is marbled with acorn flavored fat. The very famous Spanish ham “Jamón Ibérico” is also made from black Iberian pigs. The Andalusian area in which grow oak forests is known as the Valle de Pedroches and lies in Córdoba Province, Andalusia, southern Spain. This valley was called Fahs al-Ballut by the Moorish rulers of ancient Spain, meaning “Valley of the Acorns.”

MeatsMetricUS
Pork loin, trimmed off outside fat1000 g2.20 lb
Ingredients per 1000g (1 kg) of meat
Coarse salt for salting loinas needed
Cure #25.0 g1 tsp
Pimentón, sweet18 g3 Tbsp
Pimentón, hot6.0 g1 Tbsp
Nutmeg1.5 g3/4 tsp
Oregano4.0 g4 tsp
Garlic, smashed10 g3 cloves
Olive oil45 ml3 Tbsp
Instructions
  1. Remainder: multiply the above ingredients per weight of loin.
  2. Trim off the skin and connective tissue from the loin. Using force rub in a generous amount of salt (as needed) all over loin. The loin should rest in a suitable container on a layer of salt and be well covered with salt all around leaving no exposed areas. Hold in refrigerator for 24 hours.
  3. Brush off the salt, wash briefly in running water and pat dry with paper towels. Mix spices, cure #2, lemon juice and oil. Rub in all over the loin. Marinate in refrigerator for 48 hours.
  4. Stuff the loin into 55-70 mm pork or beef bungs, about 50-70 cm (20-28") long.
  5. Dry/ferment at 18-20° C (64-68° F), 80-85% humidity, for 24-48 hours.
  6. Dry at 12-14° C (53-57° F), 75-80% humidity, for 3 months.
Notes
Consume raw. The loin is clear red on outside and vivid red on inside. In traditional production the temperature was controlled by slow-burning of oak logs.

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