Jamon Iberico de Bellota is the true treasure of Spanish foods, the marriage of a noble breed, a unique ecosystem, a free-range lifestyle and a tradition of curing meats that goes back a thousand years. Slices from this beautifully marbled ham will begin to melt at room temperature because the golden acorn flavoured fat is like good quality olive oil.
Cured for over three years, this leg of ham comes from acorn-fed free range Iberico pork, only found in the Extremadura region of Spain. The rich acorn diet and outdoor exercise marble the meat, for a succulent ham that melts in your mouth.
Montanegra Iberico de Bellota ham is the ultimate of its kind. The word bellota literally means acorn, a key ingredient to the ultimate ham. If you see a jamon advertised as simply Iberico, without the bellota designation, it is not free range and did not enjoy the sweet acorns of the dehesa rangelands. Iberico ham comes from an ancient breed of pig, Cerdo Iberico, which has been roaming the woodland meadows of western Spain feeding on acorns for thousands of years. These pigs spend their lives in family groups wandering across the rolling hills of the dehesa range lands, eating herbs, grass and most importantly, bellotas (acorns). The acorns of the holm and cork oaks are very sweet and full of beneficial fats. At the end of the montanera season, they are feasting on over 20 pounds of acorns a day! This is important because the pork becomes marbled with antioxidant rich fat, allowing the hams to be cured for up to 5 years! During that time most of the fat drips away, bathing the ruby red pork with incredible flavours.
Montanegra Iberico de Bellota ham has a nutty, sweet flavour unlike any other. Enjoy each slice perfectly paired with a glass of fine Spanish wine such as Marques de Murrieta Rioja Reserva. Mount your Jamon Iberico de Bellota in a ham holder and cut delicate thin slices, about the size of a credit card. Serve them on a warm plate to allow the flavours to emerge. Then enjoy with friends and family and share the essence of Spain's finest cullinary tradition! Because whole hams continue to cure until you cut into them, you can hang it for up to 12 months before its first use where it will only get better with time.
At Basco each ham we send is accompanied by care and handling instructions as well as ham carving tips. A Ham Holder Stand and Ham Carving Knife are necessary accessories in order to carve Spanish ham properly. Store your ham in a cool, dry place. No cooking required. Average weight 7-8Kg. Product includes Free Delivery.
Thanks to the knowledge gained during more than 70 years and several generations dedicated to this activity, Montanegra produces Ibérico products that are considered to be amongst the best nowadays in Spain. A family business located in the D.O. ‘Dehesa de Extremadura’ in the Southwest of Spain. Its geographical location is one of the best areas of oak trees in the region, making the maximum use of the pasture for the breeding of Black Iberian Pigs.
About 75% of the production is Montanegra’s own cattle, leaving 25% to other Dehesas. Montanegra has an important level of ownership in the main abattoir of the province of Badajoz, therefore having larger control over this process. The drying rooms in Nogales have a capacity of 150,000 hams; the drying rooms in Higuera La Real have approximate capacity for 500,000 hams. The premises located in the South of Badajoz are ideal for the curing process due to the microclimate of the area.
The quality of Montanegra’s hams has recently been recognised by winning a 3 star Great Taste Award in 2013 for their Jamón Ibérico de Bellota D.O. elevating their ham products to some of the best in the UK.