The Mudejar star: la estrella del Jamón
Over five years ago now, we made the decision to combine the different brands of ham that we make in our two companies under the same commercial name.
After working for almost 50 years in the city of Zaragoza and 20 years making PDO Teruel ham in Monreal del Campo, we firmly believe in the need to show our clients that, despite being two different companies, our way of making ham and our product philosophy are the same. Both the TSG Serrano Ham made by Mariano Gómez, and the Teruel PDO and the cured Iberian ham made by Jamones Sierra Palomera meet the quality parameters and use the traditional know-how that we inherited from our grandfather and our father. La estrella del jamón was the commercial name we chose for this business project.
Origin of the Mudejar star
The Mudejar star or tartesic star has been used by many cultures and religions over history. Known as Gadeiro (a name that calls to mind the inhabitants of Gades, now Cádiz) or as the star of Abd al-Rahman I, first caliphate of Al-Andalus, this symbol represents a shining sun with 8 beams that the Tartesic people used to make their offerings to the Sun.
This 8-point star, the result of superimposing two concentric squares (one of which was rotated through 45 degrees), originates from mythology and the religions of ancient Mediterranean civilisations.
In the Tartesia-Turdetan period, and during the centuries that the Muslims occupied mainland Spain, they made the first coins featuring the eight-point star, as a political symbol and as a decorative element. However, it was in the Kingdom of Granada where it attained its true splendour, used to decorate buildings, etchings and jewellery. The Moucharabies and Mudejares took the eight-point star all over the north of the mainland and the Muslims and Moors spread it through the North of Africa and the Middle East. During the Middle Ages, Aragón became a symbol for Christianity, Islam and Judaism living together. This ability to get along together is captured, among other aspects, in a wealth of architecture. Teruel was privileged to have its most important Mudejar architecture monuments acknowledged as a UNESCO World Heritage Site on 28 November 1986. Also in the provincial capital of Zaragoza, boasting the most northerly Muslim palace in the world, La Aljafería, and the Cathedral of Our Saviour (La Seo), the Mudejar aspect and the eight-point star are symbols of this peaceful coexistence in the past.
Why La estrella del jamón?
Our drying spots are joined by the Mudejar Motorway. A little over 100 kilometres separates Cuarte de Huerva (Zaragoza) from Monreal del Campo (Teruel), and this area is strewn with 8-point stars that have now become the symbol of the city of Teruel and its ham.
For us, the star not only represents our origin and joining the two Aragonese provinces where we are currently based, but it also represents something more. Let’s not forget that the idea of combining our brands brought a character into the world who is now part of our very essence: Hamphrey. Our beloved piglet is doubtlessly a star in ham heaven. For us, he is the real Estrella del Jamón, the real Ham Star of our old and new history.