The ham can be classified using two criteria: breed and diet. In the case of Iberian hams, they can also be classified according to the percentage of Iberian breed.
Iberian ham comes from the Iberian breed pig, a native pig breed from the Iberian Peninsula. The meat from Iberian hams and shoulders is of a color from pink to the red purple, of a soft fibrous texture with infiltrated fat. Its fat is bright, juicy and oily, of an intense and soft touch.
They have that characteristic flavor and aroma thanks to the genetic of those pigs, which infiltrates fat in the muscles.
According to the official classification of iberian ham, they may be classified according to two criteria: breeding and fooding.
This criteria concerns the percentage of Iberian breed in the ham. The percentages may be one of the following:
This criteria concerns the food of the pig during the fattening period. It may be classified in one of the following criteria:
Serrano ham comes from common pigs, which includes different breeds which are very similar. The color of its meat goes from pink to purple tones. Its texture is homogeneous and not very fibrous, with a mild and slightly salty flavor and a pleasant aroma. As for flavor, texture and aroma, it is less strong than that of Iberian ham, as long as it is well cured.
Officially, serrano hams are classified according to the curing time. We can find 3 categories: