Chefs @ School – World Salami Day

World Salami Day was first started in 2006 in Virginia, USA by the SAS (Salami Appreciation Society) and is now celebrated worldwide.

What is salami?

Salami is a type of sausage made from dried and salted meat with herbs and spices.

Where does it come from?

Salami originated way back with the Ancient Romans who would mix meat with salt and stuff it into an edible casing (animal intestines) and leave it to air dry or cure. The name salami comes from the Latin word salari meaning salt. Did you know that the term salary which means what you are paid annually for a job actually comes from Roman times when the legionaires were paid in salt (salari) as this was a much prized commodity.

What is in salami?

Salami must contain 2% salt to actually preserve the meat. The white covering on the outside of salami is actually mould like that on Brie cheese and is of course edible and helps to flavour the salami. This mould is full of penicilin which helps to block bacteria from getting into the salami as it cures and afterwords.

Salami basicaly contains a meat, usually pork, salt and herbs and spices. Sometimes it is smoked before it is air dried for a different flavour. Salami was traditionally made with pork but can be made with a mixture of beef and pork, chicken, turkey or beef alone.

Types of salami.

Different countries and areas have their own specialities;

  • Italy  pork often with garlic.
  • France  with garlic
  • Germany  no garlic
  • Italian  with garlic
  • Spain  with paprika or chilli

There are dozens of types of salami including pepperoni (USA), chorizo (Spain), Garlic Sausage (France), Smoked Sausage (Denmark) and Spiced Pepper Salami (Germany).

How to eat salami?

Serve as part of an anti pasti platter or mezi with other cured meats and nibbles, as part of a cheeseboard, in sandwiches, in salads and of course on pizza!

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