Over the weekend the 4 month wait to sample our own
Parma Westwick Ham was up. It was a very exciting moment and really lovely that my Dad who helped us make it 4 long months ago was here to sample it.
Soon after they arrived I took it down from the Verandah ceiling. It was as hard as wood which I took to be a very good sign. No squishy bits and no foul smell. When I unwrapped it it looked less than inspiring, a bit of mould on the outside but again nothing to indicate it was rotten or otherwise good to eat.
I think in this day and age where most food is neatly packaged in plastic, looking completely sterile the idea of eating meat that has not been cooked and in fact has been hanging in my verandah miles away from a fridge or freezer is… disconcerting. But I trusted to Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and the millions of farmers (especially Italian and Spanish) who have been there before me. I am so pleased I did.
I gave the ham a good sniff and it smelled like… well like Parma Ham. Then we tasted it. It was delicious, salty and just like Parma Ham!
We carved up a big batch (that took forever by hand (this stuff really is like wood!) to take to my Uncle and Aunt’s House warming party and paired it with some dried apricots to take the edge of the saltiness of the Ham. It was a huge hit and it was totally exciting to contribute something so unusual that we had made.
Next time we will be making double the quantity and we are thinking of looking for a second hand meat slicer because it really was very hard to slice.