Italy is rightly famous for its regional food specialities. But how do you know you're buying the real deal?
The key is to look for the distinctive red and yellow PDO mark - Protected Designation of Origin. It’s your guarantee of authentic regional flavour, perfected over centuries and made to exacting traditional standards.
Here are two of our favourites…
Prosciutto di San Daniele
This silky air-dried ham is produced using age-old techniques in the hills surrounding San Daniele del Friuli, in north-eastern Italy. Here, mild sea breezes of the Adriatic Sea meet cooling winds from the Alps, creating ideal conditions for curing prosciutto. Prosciutto di San Daniele is natural, Italian and unique as it is made only with selected thighs from Italian pigs, sea salt and the special microclimate of San Daniele del Friuli. The result? A uniquely sweet and fragrant ham, with a deep rosy colour and meltingly soft texture.
Grana Padano Cheese
Developed by Benedictine monks in northern Italy nearly 1000 years ago as an ingenious way of preserving surplus milk, this savoury hard cheese is still made using traditional methods handed down over generations. Complex and fragrant, with a subtle, salty tang, its name reflects the distinctive grainy texture that develops as it matures. The Consortium for the Protection of Grana Padano Cheese ensures that every wheel of cheese is made to traditional standards so that it can be fire-branded with the Grana Padano mark of quality.
Enjoy both Prosciutto di San Daniele and Grana Padano in these flavours of summer inspired recipes and discover more at prosciuttosandaniele.it/en; granapadano.it/?l=en; Facebook Prosciutto di San Daniele & Grana Padano - en; Twitter: @SD_GP_PDO
Grana Padano Cheese Pastry Straws, Wrapped In Prosciutto di San Daniele - Makes enough for 4
1 sheet of puff pastry 30cm x 20cm
100g Grana Padano, finely grated
8 slices of Prosciutto di San Daniele
2 egg yolks
1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees. 2. Using a pastry brush, coat the whole sheet of puff pastry in egg yolk.
3. Evenly scatter the Grana Padano over the entire sheet, then place in the freezer for 30 minutes. 4. When firm, cut across width ways at 1cm intervals. 5. Twist each one and place onto another tray keeping a 3-4cm between each one. 6.Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden and crisp. 7. Allow to cool on a wire rack then wrap each one in fresh slices of Prosciuitto di San Daniele, covering 2/3 of the stick.
Recipe provided by Dan Doherty
Pear, Grana Padano & Prosciutto di San Daniele Salad - Serves 1
6 thin slices of Prosciutto di San Daniele
5g Grana Padano (grated)
6-8 shavings of Grana Padano
6 tablespoons of apple balsamic vinegar
4 tablespoons olive oil
Salt & pepper
1. Place the slices of Prosciutto di San Daniele on a plate. 2. Peel, core and slice the pear and place on the prosciutto, topping it with the grated Grana Padano.
3. Reduce the apple balsamic vinegar by 1/3 and whilst still warm add the same quantity of olive oil and stir. 4. Drizzle over the Prosciutto di San Daniele and pear and top with shavings of Grana Padano.
Recipe provided by Giorgio Locatelli
Bruschette with Prosciutto di San Daniele, Fig Compote, Grana Padano and white truffle from Alba - Serves 4
80g Prosciutto San di Daniele thinly sliced
4 slices 80 gr bread (homemade style)
15g ricotta cheese
20ml red wine
60g Valerianella salad
Grana Padano shaves
Modena traditional balsamic vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil
White truffle from Alba
Method - Fig Compote:
1. Peel the figs and cut them in slices. 2. Keep 12 slices apart as decoration and roast the figs slowly with extra virgin olive oil in the oven. 3. Sprinkle with red wine and bring it to boil. 4. Remove from heat, pass through a sieve and add ricotta cheese. 5. Mix well and season with salt and pepper
Method - Herbs:
1. Wash and dry the herbs. Season with balsamic vinegar, oil and salt.
Method - Toasted Almond:
1. Shell the almonds, remove their skin and roast them in a pan, without adding oil.
How to prepare:
1. Toast the bread and spread the fig compote over the slices. 2. Garnish each bruschetta with Prosciutto di San Daniele, fig slices, Grana Padano shaves, herbs and toasted almonds. 3. Complete with shaved white truffle from Alba
Recipe provided by Heinz Beck
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