The fat of Iberian ham, especially jamon iberico bellota pata negra fed on acorns, once the first superficial layer has been removed, the rest of the fat can be put to many uses: bear in mind that it is a fat with many nutritional properties and with a much more intense aroma and flavour than the meat itself.
Why use the fat from Iberian ham?
Apart from the fat infiltrated in the muscle, Iberian cebo or cebo de campo hams have a good layer of fat surrounding the piece, and beyond discarding it, you should make use of it, as you are paying the same price as the meat and it is also a fat with a high quality nutritional contribution. Moreover, if the piece is a 100% Iberian acorn-fed ham, the fat is even more valuable and much more appreciated.
The first thing is that when you are about to take slices of ham, I advise you to take a good proportion of fat so that the experience is complete and more forceful. If you don't like fat, Iberian ham is not for you and you should choose a Serrano ham, which has much less superfluous fat and the meat is much leaner, with no intramuscular fat. Duroc ham is a very good option, as it is in an intermediate zone as far as fat is concerned between an Iberian ham and a Serrano ham.
There are many uses you can make of ham fat, which I will tell you about below.
Uses for iberico ham fat
If you like traditional stews, you will already know that ham or bacon fat is added to many of them; without going any further, to stew or lentils; in fact, diced ham is often added to lentils.
But it is not only adding Iberian Spanish ham to the water to give the broth that intense flavour, but also in preparations by substituting it for olive oil or adding a little fat to the oil itself. Even adding it to a bowl of soup or consommé.
At Jamón Pasión store we are big fans of spoon dishes and we are never without a piece of fat at home when we get ready to cook.
A very common use and one that you will have consumed more than once while enjoying a beer or as an aperitif, is chicharrones, which is nothing more than the fried fat itself.
In your stir-fries or sautéed vegetables, if you add a piece of ham fat to the oil, you will be surprised at how much it enhances the flavour of the dish.
Suggestions for use
A very good option is to put a piece of ham fat in a bottle of olive oil to flavour it. Leave it for a few days so that it perfumes well and your breakfast toast will be much better.
Finally, I'm going to reveal a culinary secret: sandwich a slice of fat between two slices of Iberian ham, close your eyes and try it. A delicacy of the gods! And if you like strong flavours, all the things I've just explained in this article can be put into practice with the fat from the Iberian shoulder ham.
In this article you can read about the beneficial properties of jamon iberico and, of course, the wonderful fat with high levels of oleic acid it provides.