Jambon De Morvan

Jambon de Morvan is a ham prepared in the traditional way, as it has been for centuries in this part of Burgundy. The killing of the pig is a major event, and a good part of the village is likely to turn out to help with the labour-consuming business of turning the offal into sausages and other pork by-products.

After being cut to shape, the hams are rolled in salt, then put into a “saloir” or salt-crock; these used to be made of wood but now are more likely to be made of the local earthenware pottery.

The “saloir” is prepared with a layer of thyme, bay-leaves, garlic, shallots, pepper and vinegar, and then the hams are added on top. Pieces of lard are put in between, together with other pieces of pork meat such as the ears and tail of the pig, and the lid of the pot is firmly closed.

The pot is kept unopened for up to 40 days, after which the hams are well rinsed to remove the last traces of the salt, then hung to dry from a hook on the ceiling for a day. Finally, each ham is put into a sack and is left to dry for five or six months.

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