2 July 2012

Spanish Lomo - a difference in flavour...

spanish lomo
Spanish lomo or cured Spanish pork is more expensive per kilo than its more famous cousin the cured ham. 'Lomo' is a real delicacy and if you haven't sampled it yet you really should - lomo has a flavour all of its own.

There are various different types of cured lomo available, here we have the two most common which, in the flavour department are very different.

Lomo tenderloin (pictured left) is exactly that, a tenderloin of pork taken from above the ribs. The tenderloin has almost zero fat except for a minimal amount around the edges so essentially what you get is around 98% meat, the tenderloin also comes from the most expensive and 'tender' cut, sliced thinly from a whole piece (which resemble a large round sausage) this lomo is divine, it is also available vacuum packed in slices but by far the best flavour comes from slices carved yourself.

To the right of the picture is a piece from higher up nearer the shoulder and is called 'lomo corteza' which means it still has a layer of fat and skin on one side of the loin. Lomo corteza is actually just about as tender as its tenderloin cousin as during the curing process the layer of fat keeps the meat moist, the other side of the meat is usually seasoned with cracked black pepper and herbs such as rosemary. Being slightly cheaper to buy these pieces of lomo can also be sold as very large pieces named 'tabla de lomo', these impressive loins of pork are presented on wooden slabs to which they are hand tied with string and heavily seasoned with herbs.

If you are undecided between the two then smaller pieces are of course available but as far as flavour is concerned they are actually just as good as each other, the tenderloin has its own unique flavour, somewhat milder but with a lighter texture whereas the lomo corteza packs a more rustic punch with a real depth, you know this one has been curing somewhere in Spain as it has that earthy, home made flavour and aroma to it.

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