When it comes to tradition, we cannot fail to mention the art of making Culatello. It is said that back in 1332, during the wedding banquet of Andrea Conti Rossi and Giovanna dei Conti Sanvitale, Culatello samplings were carried out. It is also said that the some Culatello had been brought to the bride and the groom as a gift and that later on the Pallavicino’s offered some Culatello to Galeazzo Maria Sforza, Duke of Milan.
The first explicit and official quotation about Culatello dates back to 1735 and it is found in a document kept in Parma. The first literary references date back to the nineteenth century, by the local poet Giuseppe Callegari and the sculptor Renato Brozzi, who would exchange views on Culatello with the famous poet Gabriele D’Annunzio.
Culatello di Zibello is a type of cold meat made from the posterior muscles and inner thigh of the pig, properly cleaned on the surface and trimmed to obtain the classic pear shape. To put it in simple words, Culatello consists of muscle bundles from the thigh, which is the best part of the ham. Its curing must be carried out in well-ventilated areas at a temperature between 13° and 17° C for no longer than 10 months as of the salting phase. During this period ventilation, natural light exposure and moisture are allowed depending on the climatic factors in the production area.
The area where the Culatello Zibello is produced includes the following municipalities in the province of Parma: Polesine, Busseto, Zibello, Soragna, Roccabianca, San Secondo, Sissa and Colorno.
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Come to taste it at November Porc, a travelling gastronomic Festival, every weekend of November.