Depending on how it is cut, ham speck tastes slightly different. Many people prefer to machine slice their Speck Alto Adige P.G.I very thinly, while others swear by the traditional method and cut their speck with a knife. Whether you cut it with or without the crust, dice it, cut off thin or thick slices also depends on the South Tyrolean recipes you are preparing. If you are planning to make the popular South Tyrolean Speck Dumplings, you will, for instance, have to dice the speck finely. In South Tyrol's mountain huts, on the other hand, you will be served a traditional slice of speck in one piece.
How to slice your Speck Alto Adige P.G.I. properly:
- Remove the packaging foil from your piece of speck and allow the speck to breathe for at least one hour at room temperature so that it has a chance to develop its full aroma.
- Cut off a slice that is about 3 cm thick lengthwise.
- Remove the rind from the slice of speck.
- If you prefer a milder tasting piece of speck, remove the spice crust. The traditional way would be to leave the crust intact, as this gives the speck a more savoury and intense taste.
- Either cut the slice into thinner slices or strips or dice it – depending on what your South Tyrolean recipe calls for. The best way to enjoy peck is to cut it as thinly as possible against the grain. This gives it the perfect bite.
How do you properly store your ham? Once unwrapped from its original packaging, you can safely store the ham in a cool place or in the refrigerator for several weeks, if you wrap it into a moist cloth towel or between two soup plates. Do not place the Speck near any foods that have a strong fragrance of their own.
In its sealed vacuum packaging the Speck has a shelf life of several months, if kept in a cool, dark place or in the refrigerator.