Mortadella, the undisputed ruler of cured pork tradition in Bologna, has become sadly synonymous with low-quality industrial production. This is despite its long history, going back centuries—in fact, Slow Food established a Presidium some years ago to protect classic mortadella, in order to restore its deserved reputation. But the area around Bologna is also home to some other truly excellent cooked cured meats, which are very rare these days, like salame rosa and lyon.
The first differs from mortadella in how the meat is worked: shoulder, leg and chuck are used, but only the leg and chuck are minced, while the shoulder is cut with a knife into larger pieces, giving the finished salami a marbled effect. The meat is packed into either natural cow bladders, for a final weight of 6 to 8 kilos, or natural pig bladders, for a final weight of around 1.5 kilos. When serving, the salame rose should be cut into slices that are not too thin (around 1.5 millimeters) and should maintain a good consistency in the mouth. The flavor is characterized by spiced notes and a rich savoriness.
Lyon is the younger brother of mortadella, also known as salame or mortadella fina for several centuries, and is a result of the custom of packing the mortadella mixture into natural pork bungs, giving the finished product the shape of a salami. The cuts used are shoulder, neck (in cubes), lean neck meat, leg cuts and stomach. It is sliced like a salami and has a similar texture to mortadella but with a stronger flavor.
Both of these cured meats are seasoned with garlic and pepper and cooked in traditional hot-air ovens, with the air temperature gradually rising to 85°C, bringing the centre of the meats to 75°C.
Bologna Salame rosa and Lyon are available all year round
Bologna province and Cento-pievese municipalities
Presidium supported by
Azienda Agricola Tizzano
Via Alberelli, 28
Tel. +39 051 6850011