Guijuelo is a town of Castilla y Leon, where the best Iberico pork in Spain is found.
The Iberian ham from Guijuelo is recognised as one of the four protected designations of origin for Iberian ham.
This specific ham is produced in the municipalities of Guijuelo, Bejar and Candelario. The area is so well known that more than 150 ham companies are concentrated there.
Tourists, or whoever is interested, can visit the “Museo de la industria Chacinera” where they can discover all that the area has to offer. The best time of the year to visit Guijuelo would be February, when they celebrate the “Jornadas de Matanza Típica”, to see what a regional fiesta is all about.
In general, a region to produce ham, must have the following characteristics:
- Specific climate: the climate must have ideal temperature and humidity conditions. These characteristics are very important for the price of drying and affect the whole curing process.
- Vegetation: The “Dehesa” is made up of holm oaks, cork oaks or gall oaks that have grown in a specific climate and with specific characteristics. These are the most important trees for producing the acorns used to fatten the animal.
- Production process: For all its history, the production process has to follow its tradition and experience, combining these qualities with the most advanced facilities.
- Tradition: It is a very important part for the area, the transmission of knowledge, of the ham tradition and the experience of the ham masters of the area.
Why is the Iberian Ham from Guijuelo so important? What is different from the others?
This type of ham has to be very smooth and unctuous. Thanks to the climate of the area, with cold winds and short summers, the ham is cured naturally with the climatic conditions of the area.
Less salt is used and the taste is sweeter compared to other hams.
The pigs are fed on acorns, which gives the hams a high oleic acid content combined with other fatty components that have a positive effect on the health of the animal.