Making Air Cured Ham - Dried and Smoked Pork Recipe

Rohschinken
Rohschinken. J.McGavin
  • 60 mins
  • Prep: 60 mins,
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: approximately 3 pounds
Ratings

This recipe comes from an expat Bavarian who missed the air-dried ham he could find in his homeland. Also known as Coppa, an Italian label, this kind of meat is called "Rohschinken" in German, or literally "raw ham." Since the steps include smoking as well as a salt cure in this recipe, it is not really raw.

He also uses a nice, inexpensive pork loin roast of 4 to 5 pounds, the kind you find vacuum-packed in groceries from time to time, instead of a leg or hind quarter. It is simpler to find and already deboned, which can make it easier to handle. A fresh ham would work with this recipe as well.

What You'll Need

  • 30 grams sea salt
  • 3 grams brown sugar
  • 3 grams coarsely ground, black pepper
  • 5 grams coarsely ground juniper berries
  • 1 grams coarsely ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 gram coarsely ground cinnamon
  • 2 coarsely ground cloves
  • 1 bay leaf, crumbled
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground fennel seed
  • 1 - 2 teaspoons coarsely ground coriander
  • 1 - 2 teaspoons coarsely ground caraway
  • 1 teaspoons dried marjoram
  • 1 dried chili, crumbled
  • Pressed garlic, to taste (optional)
  • 4 -5 pounds pork loin or ham
  • Red wine
  • Vodka or rum
  • Olive oil
  • Equipment: Refrigerator, smoker, fruit wood chips or beech wood chips, cotton bag, cool place to hang meat

How to Make It

  1. Mix all ingredients together to form a rub, and rub it all over the meat you are using. Place the meat in a plastic bag.
  2. Add a small glass of red wine and a smaller glass of vodka or rum (optional) to the bag. Close the bag and place in the refrigerator.
  3. Turn daily for up to 50 days.
  4. Wash off the meat and let it air dry at cool room temperature (about 65°F). It should be slightly dry on the edges.
  5. If there is no fat on the meat, rub or brush it with olive oil.
  1. Smoke it every day for 4 days for several hours. Let it rest at cool room temperature in between. Rub it with oil in between as well.
  2. Tie it into a tighter, rounded shape with kitchen cord. Wrap it in a cloth bag and hang it in a cellar or cool garage. The sack is to keep the insects at bay.
  3. Take it down from time to time and roll it around to test the consistency of the meat. Depending on humidity and temperature, the meat will be ready in several weeks (summer) to several months (winter).

Notes:

This meat will keep at room temperature for awhile, but most people keep it in the refrigerator or slice it thin and freeze it.

This recipe calls for regular sea salt, which contains a very little sodium nitrite, the salt which can prevent microorganisms such as Clostridium botulinum. Some commercial hams are made with regular salt but most are made with curing salt or pink salt. Feel free to use pink salt in this recipe instead of sea salt, it is safer from a food safety standpoint.

See a recipe for homemade bacon here and one for cured, smoked Kasseler (pork loin) here.