We are utterly convinced that there’s nothing better than a good plate of ham because this delicacy can stand alone as a real palate-pleaser. However, nobody thinks twice about eating ham with any type of bread, normal, toasted or bread sticks, and dowsing this bread in oil or even grated tomato. We’re also happy to accept the classic melon and ham combo in the summer or sprinkle flakes of ham over fruit salads or cold soups such as salmorejo. But… have any of you ever tried ham with strawberries, anchovies or chocolate?
Ham with strawberries
In previous posts, we suggested ham recipes with fruit such as avocado, figs or mango. Today, we want to propose a mixture that is a little odd to say the least: ham with strawberries.
According to Bernard Lahousse, Peter Coucquyt and John Langenbick, creators of Foodpairing – a tool that analyses an ingredient’s aromatic molecules – Iberian ham is a good match for fruit such as pineapple, Conference pears or strawberries. Let’s not forget that smell is responsible for 80% of our sense of taste.
To give this combo a try, we suggest a simple salad. You just need a base of mixed lettuce, tomato, walnuts, strawberries, Conference pears, red onion and a few slices of our Jamón Ibérico de Bellota 50% Raza Ibérica Sierra Palomera. If you serve it with a vinaigrette using a sweet wine such as Pedro Ximénez, you’ll be blown away by the result.
Ham with anchovies
Nobody is surprised by the ham and fish combo. Where would trout be without ham? However, you might not have thought that two products mainly preserved in salt would combine so well in just one bite. Well, they do and it’s amazing.
On this occasion, our recommendation combines wonderful anchovies from the Bay of Biscay, with all the salt washed off, with the sweet flavour of our PDO Sierra Lindón Teruel Ham.
Surprise your guests with pre-dinner nibbles: anchovy toast with crunchy PDO Teruel Ham and beetroot emulsion.
In a previous post, we already showed you how to make crunchy ham, but here’s a quick reminder. Cover an oven tray with a layer of baking paper. Put a few slices of ham on the paper and then another layer of paper on top. For the ham to stay straight, put something heavy on the whole thing (such as another oven tray). Put it in the oven for 30 minutes, preheated to 120ºC (you can also do this on a plate in the microwave).
To make the beetroot emulsion (another product which is a good match for ham aromatically according to Foodpairing), tip a jar of cooked beetroot into a blender and blend adding oil little by little as if you were making mayonnaise. With patience, it will emulsify to give you the right texture. After toasting the bread in slices, cover it with grated tomato, place the anchovy on top, a dab of emulsion and decorate with the crunchy ham. A sure-fire success!
Ham with chocolate
We’ll admit that this even seems weird to us. The first thing we think of when we talk about this combo is a ham sandwich with chocolate spread, but nothing could be further from the truth. Have you heard about rabbit or wild boar stews with chocolate? Well, that’s where we’re heading.
To try this combo, let’s cook a risotto with beer, ham and chocolate. A while back, we showed you how to make a risotto with king prawns, chestnuts, mushrooms and PDO Teruel Ham, so this time, how about we substitute the white wine with beer and sprinkle a little grated chocolate (at least 70% cocoa) to finish off the dish. It’s really not what you might expect!
But if this were not enough, a few years ago the Extremadura Agro-food Technology Centre (CTAEX) patented a chocolate bar with Iberian ham as a snack and called it “Chachos”.
There can be no doubt about it – a wonderful product like ham goes well with everything, or almost everything.