he unique flavour of Barrancos
The Alentejo breed is a descendent of the sus mediterraneus wild boar from the south, deriving from Iberian or Roman lineage;
Due to its genetics and the fact that it was not crossed with other breeds, it has greater capacity for the infiltration of intramuscular fat;
This explains the marble-like veins that give the meat its unique greasiness and texture, in addition to an unmistakable taste and aroma;
Historically preserved in Portugal, the Alentejo Breed is a unique and valued breed throughout the world and is recognised for its authenticity
The small Town of Barrancos is located at the summit of the western edge of the Serra Morena mountain range. It is characterised by its Mediterranean microclimate, with winds blowing from the northwest (NW) and west (W), reaching a maximum speed of 60km/h;
With an annual relative humidity of 70%, maximum temperatures in July and August are between 38 and 40ºC and the minimum figures registered in the months of December and January are between 3 and 5ºC;
The pure fresh air and the natural climatic conditions are fundamental in the curing process of the Cured Ham, which occurs slowly and naturally, as opposed to other products that are cured in smoke houses.
The period at the end of winter and the beginning of spring is the ideal time to begin the natural drying of Barrancos Cured Ham P.D.O. The winds that blow through the windows and the low temperatures of 3º to 5º C, favour dehydration and drying on the upper floor of the drying room.
The meat rests until the end of Summer and with the arrival of high temperatures of between 38º and 40ºC it gradually begins to sweat, at which point the oleic acid infiltrates into the muscular fibres, giving the meat its characteristic aroma.
Without any human intervention, the length of the drying time is variable. Time and patience do the rest.