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Monday, September 21, 2015


Pork Lard
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Cat. lardeo, 1. pork lard cured or smokedincluding the skin. Although generally not valued today. It stopped hunger and misery in all corners of Spain and England during centuries thanks to it and its condiments. For millions it has been the meal with bread. Peasants and pilgrims subsisted on it for extended periods.

A 15th Century Burger King!
Photo by: Lord-Williams
In the month of September, solid fat is most savored with bread from two pound loaves, because at this the time of year the least number of pieces hang from the rafters and meat is scarce. On cold days when autumn begins, raw onions are eaten with it. Hunger makes this dish somewhat delicious and it is thought to improve the memory.

As per Spanish standards, Leonese solid lard is cured making it tastier than that in other regions. After the slaughter, it is placed in a bed of salt for 15 days. Then it is washed in the river and hung from the rafters to receive the kitchen smoke for three months before it is consumed. Good solid lard must be tall, pink and buttery.

A Salamantine Touch
Photo by: Lord-Williams
Solid lard from Salamantine pigs has a thin coat of black skin, which is highly regarded. Thick skin indicates tough pigs. Solid lard is consumed every day of the year in León for lunch and supper. In summer, during the harvest and threshing, it is eaten abundantly as an afternoon snack and often for mid-morning lunch. For snacks it is eaten raw. For lunch it is blanched before consumption.

Estremanians cut it into ½” cubes and fry it. It was not considered repugnant but thought to be the most digestible. In short, it was an essential element in medieval society.

2. tough domestic pigs judged by the thickness of the skin when deciding which to slaughter for consumption. [Ares. “Comidas.” 1994:93-94; and Gázquez. Cocina. 2002:96;139]

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