Bresaola della Valtellina IGP: All the textual and photographic material in this page is copied, with proper authorization, from the website of the Consorzio Tutela del Nome Bresaola della Valtellina (Consortium for the protection of the name Bresaola della Valtellina). Only minor changes to shortern the content are present.
Beef Bresaola Product Description
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP: Makers of Bresaola still use age-old meat preparation techniques. This famed specialty is from the Lombardy region, and you typically eat it raw. Bresaola is salted and air-dried meat, from the tenderloin or fillet. It has a very dark red color and is simply eaten sliced thinly, with olive oil, lemon juice, and black pepper.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP and charcuterie:
Charcuterie is typical of Contado di Chiavenna. Bresaola (cured raw beef), or Brisaola in the local dialect, is definitely the best known local product. Recognized by the Protected Geographical Indication, and renowned in Valchiavenna since 1400.
The word brasa or brace, meaning embers, used for drying the meat, are the origin of Its name; hence the name brasa-saola, shortened to Bresaola.
Bresaola comes only with beef (top-round) between two and four years old. The muscular mass is trimmed and dry-cured; drying takes an average of a week and the meat has to dehydrate rapidly during the first days of treatment. It has a delicate and slightly aromatic flavor and a pleasant taste, which is moderately salty and never acidic. The finished product is cylindrical in shape.
Valtellina’s charcuterie culture revolves around crotti, natural cavities in the rocks formed by major landslides. A breeze of air called the sorel blows up from the depths of these cavities, which inhabitants use for conserving charcuterie, bresaola, and wine.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP: The Sondrio Province
The typical production area of the Bresaola della Valtellina IGP coincides with the whole Sondrio Province in the Lombardy Region. The province contains two main valleys located in the heart of the Alps: Valtellina and Valchiavenna, which is the place of origin of the product, according to the historical and literary tradition.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP derives from a thousand-year lore
The unrepeatable climate of the valley is the main secret behind the production of Bresaola della Valtellina IGP, making it a typical, unique and incomparable product.
The cool and clear air from the heart of the Alps, the particular form of the Sondrio Province – which matches completely the typical production area – creates the ideal conditions for the gradual aging of the Bresaola.
The climate is not the only determining factor. the best cuts of the beef round produce the high-quality deli meat, and the most fascinating part is its processing. The preparation follows strict phases that tradition turned into actual rituals passed down from father to son with passion and professionalism. The ability to choose the best cuts of adult cattle, tip steak and steak eye of round, the expertise in trimming, and the skillful dosing of natural aromas, are rooted in the secret of ancient recipes. The massaging of the meat during salting, and the right variations of temperature and humidity must take place with precise timing and method during aging; the legacy of a culture embedded in local tradition.
The real Bresaola della Valtellina is different from “dried meat” and other products deriving from drying beef. The European Union IGP (Protected Geographical Indication) Trademark is a guarantee. Only producers of the Sondrio Province can exclusively use it. Only master butchers who strictly comply with the Production Regulations can have the trademark. It is subject to constant monitoring by the Inspection Agency CSQA Certificazioni S.r.l., and by the Protection Consortium authorized by the Ministry for Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies.
It is very nutritious deli meat, by far the most low-fat, high in protein, iron, vitamins, and minerals, and highly digestible. Ideal for those who love lightness without sacrificing taste. It is a multi-purpose ingredient, allowing creative combinations for the invention of refined dishes, appetizers, and easy-to-prepare quick snacks.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGI: ancient history of genuineness.
The meat preservation method of salting and drying is extremely ancient, and Bresaola shares it with other somewhat similar products around the world.
The product can preserve even with light salting thanks to the generally low temperature, very dry air and the particular conformation of the Sondrio Province, which matches as a whole the protected area of origin . As a result, the product is soft and moderately savory.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP: The word’s still uncertain origin.
The term Bresaola, originally brazaola, brisaola or bresavola, has a very uncertain origin. Certainly, while the suffix ‘saola’ can refer to the use of salt for product preservation, finding a single interpretation for the origin of the whole term is much more difficult.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP: Only top-quality, safe and controlled meat, chosen all around the world as an excellent product
For the production of Bresaola della Valtellina IGP, certified producers select and use the best bovine meat, a top-quality choice that makes it a unique product in the world and one of the Italian excellence products. Credit goes to the experience acquired over a centuries-old tradition, and to the safety guaranteed by the IGP Regulations.
The production of Bresaola della Valtellina IGP uses only top-category cuts. The selected cuts are highly valuable and tender. They come only from the beef round of selected breeds of cattle – preferably free-range cattle fed with selected feeds – of 18 months to 4 years of age, as set forth in the Regulations (therefore excluding cow meat, which is dark and does not reach the required level of consistency).
Compliance with the Production Regulations is verified by a third-party inspection body (CSQA Certificazioni), authorized by the Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies. Therefore, when we taste Bresaola della Valtellina IGP, we know that it is the result of the best choice of raw materials, guaranteed by full traceability of the production chain and a processing protocol approved by the supervisory authority. Its implementation is verified by a third-party certification body.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP: Certification guaranteeing traditional processing.
Bresaola della Valtellina IGP: Nutritional characteristics
Bresaola is one of the products that best meet the nutritional needs of consumers who care for their healthy diet. Bresaola is also an excellent ingredient for gourmet cuisine. It has a high protein content, low-fat content and it is low in calories too. Bresaola della Valtellina IGP provides branched-chain amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) in similar proportions to those recommended for athletes’ food supplements. It is naturally rich in vitamin B1, B6, and B12, and has a significant content of dietary elements. Especially iron, zinc, phosphorus, and potassium. It has no carbohydrates, calcium and vitamin D. You can provide them by accompanying Bresaola with bread, grana cheese flakes, and lemon juice drops.
What to see in Lombardia when not eating Bresaola and drinking wine.