The exclusive seal is your guarantee of authenticity and quality
If pork is a cornerstone of Spanish cuisine, cured ham (jamon)—made from the tastiest part of the pig—is the cupola. And to take the building metaphor even higher, Consorcio Jamon Serrano Español’s (CJSE) jamon is the cupola’s peak. The consortium’s exclusive seal is your guarantee that the jamon is not only of the highest quality, but also that it was sourced from and produced in Spain, aged for a minimum of 12 months, and meets the consortium’s standards for flavor, texture, and aroma—insuring the jamon is in its optimum moment to eat and enjoy.
All CJSE jamones carry the EU’s blue and yellow Guaranteed Traditional Specialty seal, which indicates the jamon has specific characteristics that distinguish it from other similar products, and that it was made in a traditional manner. Jamon Serrano marked with this symbol alone can be produced anywhere in the EU and aged a minimum of 7 months. Only jamones that bear the CJSE seal are 100 percent Spanish, and unlike other jamones serrano, are individually hand selected.
A PRODUCT RICH IN HISTORY
Serrano comes from the Spanish word, sierra, which means mountain range. It was in the cold and dry climate of the Pyrenees and Cantabrian mountains that these jamones were traditionally cured. The consumption of pork on the Iberian Peninsula goes back as far as the ancient Celts, and by the time of the Roman occupation, which began in 218 BCE and lasted roughly 600 years, cured jamon was a valuable commodity. Coins from the reigns of Emperors Augustus and Agrippa even bear the shape of a jamon. Before industrialization, curing jamon was a family tradition, carried out in the late fall. The jamones were stored in cool, humid caves until the spring, when warmer, drier temperatures helped complete the maturing process.
JAMON SERRANO PRODUCTION UNDER THE CJSE
Founded in 1990, the CJSE is an association of 24 jamon serrano producers who follow strict regulations, beginning with the selection of the raw material. The jamon must have a certain thickness of fat to be suitable for the curing process, and to develop the silky texture and delicate flavor that characterize Jamon Consorcio Serrano.
The raw meat is first covered in sea salt, which helps to dehydrate it and gives the finished product its deep pink color and enticing aroma. After a few days, the jamones are washed to remove excess salt and hung to dry in a temperature-controlled environment for a minimum of 40 days. Then, they go on to the maturing stage, in which the temperature is gradually raised from about 41°F to about 93°F and the relative humidity is kept between 60 and 80 percent. The entire process takes at least 36 weeks, during which the jamon will have lost 34 percent of its weight, an exclusive requirement of the CJSE. The jamones are continually inspected and evaluated, and only the ones that meet the CJSE’s criteria are individually selected to be marked with the identifying seal. Each CJSE Jamon is also labeled with a unique number so it can be traced. These jamones are shipped to more than 60 countries around the world.
JAMON CONSORCIO SERRANO AND NUTRITION
Jamon Consorcio Serrano is a healthy addition to your diet: low in calories and high in essential amino acids, B-complex vitamins, and minerals—including calcium, sodium, phosphorus, zinc, and iron. It is rich in non-saturated fatty acids, notably oleic acid, which helps to improve cholesterol levels. Whether you enjoy this exceptional cured jamon on a cheese plate, in a sandwich, or in a recipe, you can be sure that you have chosen an authentic product of the highest quality—the pride of Spain—that is both delicious and good for you.
For more information and recipes, visit consorcioserrano.es/en/