Frequently Asked Questions
Q: It looks like there is mold on my jamón. Does this mean the meat is bad?
It is normal for a thin layer of mold to appear on hams, particularly in high-humidity conditions. This penicillin-like mold is completely harmless. Simply remove it with a clean, damp cloth, or with a cloth soaked in olive oil.
Q: Why are there small white spots on my jamón?
Thyroxine, or small, chalky granules, naturally form on muscle fibers during the long curing process. It is similar to what happens to cured cheeses. The granules vary in size and shape, and are perfectly safe to eat. In fact, thyroxineÂ is often an indicator of quality, showing you that the meat was properly cured.
Q: The cut surface of my jamón looks dry and dark. Should I be concerned?
This means that the jamón has had a prolonged exposure to the atmosphere. You may notice that the color even has an iridescent appearance. It is natural and does not affect the flavor of the jamón. You can avoid discoloration by simply covering the cut jamón with a cheesecloth.
Q: There appears to be salt on my jamón. Should I remove it?
Salt, or saline precipitates, may form on the surface of the ham in dry conditions. It will not affect the taste of your ham. Simply brush it off or wipe it away before using.
Q: There is a white film on the surface of the jamón. What should I do?
The film is mostly thyroxine as described above. Simply discard the discolored slice and proceed with the using the rest of the jamón.
Q: Should I cut away the fat from the jamón?
The fat protects the meat and helps it keep longer. Fat also gives the ham flavor. And in the case of jamón Ibérico, the fat contains fatty acids that actually help reduce LDL (bad cholesterol) in human blood. The fat is part of what makes jamón delicious and healthy, and should be left on each slice.