What is Prosciutto?

What is Prosciutto and How to Use it to Make Delectable Dishes

Heard about prosciutto but don't know much about it? Then here is an article that will enlighten you on what exactly prosciutto is. Read on to know more.
Prosciutto is nothing but the Italian name for ham. There are basically two varieties of prosciutto, prosciutto crudo and prosciutto cotto. The first type refers to uncooked prosciutto, while the second one refers to cooked prosciutto. Prosciutto is thinly sliced and most of the time it is served uncooked. These slices are very thin and are almost transparent. It is wrapped around vegetables and fruits and served uncooked. Sometimes it is slightly cooked, specially, while preparing pasta recipes.

Prosciuttos are made in a typical manner. Firstly, high quality meat cuts are selected and then they are kept in a cool place for about 1 day. The meat is then washed and trimmed, and sea salt and spices are applied thoroughly on the slices. These slices are then rubbed with salts and spices for 2 more months. Then, the meat is washed to remove the salt deposits on it. After washing, the slices are hung in a cool and breezy place and are left for curing. The duration for curing these slices can be anywhere between 2 months to 2 years.

Now, when you know what is prosciutto, learn the easy recipes given below.

Easy Prosciutto Recipes

Prosciutto-wrapped Asparagus

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

Ingredients
Fresh asparagus (trimmed) - 1 pound
Prosciutto - 1 package (3 ounce)
Lemon juice - 1 tablespoon
Lemon zest - 1 teaspoon

Procedure
#1 Take a large pot and pour water into it. Then, add some salt to this water and bring it to boil.
#2 When the water boils, add the asparagus into the pot and cook it, until it becomes tender and little crisp (for about 4 minutes).
#3 Drain the excess water immediately and transfer the asparagus into a bowl of ice water. Remove the excess water with paper towels.
#4 Separate the cooked asparagus and make small bundles. Wrap each bundle with prosciutto and then sprinkle lemon zest and lemon juice over them.

Prosciutto Scallops

Prosciutto Scallops

Ingredients
2 pounds sea scallops (Large, shelled)
½ pound prosciutto (thinly sliced)
½ cup butter (melted)
Toothpicks

Procedure
#1 First, preheat the grill on a medium-high heat and soak the toothpicks in water.
#2 Then, take a scallop and wrap a slice of prosciutto around it. Repeat the same for the remaining scallops.
#3 Secure the prosciuttos over the scallops with the help of soaked toothpicks.
#4 Then lightly oil the grill grate and place the scallops on the preheated grill.
#5 Cook the prosciutto scallops for about 5 minutes and baste them with butter occasionally.
#6 Cook them for 8 more minutes until they become opaque.

Prosciutto Pasta

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

Ingredients
10 slices Prosciutto (chopped)
4 cups tube pasta (uncooked, medium)
2 cups heavy whipping cream
½ cup minced fresh parsley
¼ cup chopped onion
½ pound mushrooms (sliced, fresh)
2 tbsp. Butter
2 tsp. Cornstarch
¼ tsp. pepper
Parmesan cheese (shredded)

Procedure
#1 To prepare this, first cook the pasta by following the directions on the package.
#2 Take a large skillet and put butter and oil in it. Place the skillet over heat and sauté mushrooms in it.
#3 Add prosciutto to the mushrooms and saute for 3 more minutes.
#4 Take a small bowl, mix cornstarch with cream to form a smooth paste.
#5 Pour this mixture into the skillet and then add parsley and pepper to it.
#6 Bring the mixture to boil and cook it to obtain a thick texture.
#7 Drain the cooked pasta, add it to the mixture in the skillet, and mix all the ingredients together. #8 Sprinkle some Parmesan cheese over the yummy prosciutto pasta and serve.

Prosciutto are high in calories and are also rich in cholesterol. They contain high amount of fats and sodium and hence, not considered very healthy. So, make sure you burn those extra calories with exercise, whenever you have your favorite prosciutto dish. Happy cooking!