Nduja: all about the spicy salami from Calabria

The nduja for some years has been among the most popular spicy spreadable salami in the world. Made in Calabria, in the southern part of Italy, it is characterized by a unique and spicy taste. It is suitable to be used in delicious delicacies, from appetizers to first courses.

What is nduja

For those who do not know it, nduja is a typical salami that stands out for its soft, creamy consistency and bright red color; the coloration so accentuated is substantially due to the hot pepper used in the processing of the salami. Although its origins are unclear, certainly nduja comes from peasant traditions and from the need to obtain as many edible products from the processing of pork meat, "nothing is thrown away from the pig" is the phrase that still today is often repeated by the elderly who inhabit the Calabrian lands. Today nduja is made using the fatter part of pork, typically bacon and bacon.

For many the term nduja, so particular, would go back to the French andouille , a word that it has been used in France since the Middle Ages to indicate charcuterie products produced from tripe and pork entrails. This French salami for some historians would have been brought to Italy, more specifically to Calabria, by Gioacchino Murat, king of Naples at the time of the Napoleonic wars; he would have distributed it to his subjects as a sign of thanks.
From what moment that somewhat spartan salami was taken up by the Calabrian people who reinvented it by varying the recipes making it the precious product that we can taste on our tables today.

 Nduja of Spilinga

The places of nduja

Nduja is a product typical of the Poro plateau, in particular of Spilinga , a small village located in the province of Vibo Valentia. The salami is also produced in several other areas of Calabria, especially on the Tyrrhenian side of Calabria, where the production of this simple salami has become the real engine of the local economy. In Spilinga, on August 8 of each year, the traditional Sagra della nduja takes place, a day entirely dedicated to the most famous Calabrian salami in the world, which allows you to taste it in many different ways.

How to make Nduja

Nduja is typically produced during the winter with the fatter parts of pork, such as bacon, bacon and lard, minced and kneaded with copious spicy chili, rigorously from Calabria, which, in addition to giving the meat a red connotation, allows a long conservation. Once the mixture of fats and meat takes on a fairly homogeneous and creamy consistency, it is stuffed into the natural pig casing, then subjected to a delicate smoking with aromatic herbs. The nduja is left to mature naturally for about three months and up to a maximum of six, it is then marketed as a classic vacuum-packed sausage or as nduja in jar , to maintain the flavor and taste unchanged.