The Mangalica is one of the largest pigs in the world.
On average, 65-70% of the casing that covers the pig is fat, with lean meat being only 30-35% of the casing; as a comparison, in other races the fat does not comprise more than 50%.
The flesh of the Mangalica pig is reddish, very mottled, with creamy white fat that can melt at 32ºC. It is rich in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids (polyunsaturated fatty acids) and in natural antioxidants. Therefore, it is healthier than the fat of the white pig varieties used in intensive farming, and it is even good for the heart. According to studies of the University of Debrecen in Hungary, the levels of Omega 3 in Mangalica are 2 to 3 times higher than in many varieties of fish. Its large amount of unsaturated fatty acids allows it to melt at lower temperatures than other pigs, which translates into organoleptic virtues considered as a delicacy by some of the best chefs in the world.
In addition, Mangalica fat slowly infiltrates all of the pork meat, which makes it so tasty. This is due to good nutrition of the pig through a natural diet of fodder, wheat, corn and barley, resulting in a strong aroma and a lot of flavor. The lard that Mangalica provides is very light and melts at a lower temperature than the lard of other pigs since it contains more unsaturated fat.
Due to the high fat content, the cured pork products of Mangalica can be in dryers and storage for a long time, which allows the flavor to deepen without losing moisture. In Spain, ham producers discovered that the Mangalica breed is ideal for the long process of air curing, precisely the process that has made Spanish cured ham famous throughout the world. A Mangalica pork leg can age for up to 3 and a half years, similar to Iberian ham, maintaining a moist and flexible texture, an intense and deep red color, and a complex flavor of its own.
In addition to the cured meat, Mangalica pork is also sold as fresh meat, which is increasingly appreciated due to its taste and high quality. Their demand is expanding and some of the best chefs in the world, like Daniel Humm of Eleven Madison Park, are including it in their restaurants and compare the quality with that of Kobe beef.
In Asiatic cuisine, Mangalica fresh meat is increasingly used in dishes such as bulgogi, a typical dish of Korean cuisine, or in very popular dishes in Japan such as tonkatsu, a breaded and fried pork chop, or sukiyaki, in which Mangalica's fresh meat is cooked in a nabemono (steamed) style.
Because the Mangalica pig can never be bred in large quantities, but only in an artisanal way for reasons of its natural lifestyle and feeding, its price is higher than that of other pigs. All this has led, day by day, to it gaining followers who appreciate its intense flavor and its abundant infiltration of fat.
The Mangalica is an unusual and very attractive breed and its meat has an important contribution to make in the world of gourmet products.
Their demand is expanding and some of the best chefs in the world are including it in their restaurants and compare the quality with that of Kobe beef.
Mangalica ham has multiple nutritional qualities. It is a food rich in high-quality proteins and it is easily assimilated by our bodies; in addition:
- It has large amounts of group B vitamins.
- Large doses of iron and zinc, essential in our bodies.
- It is recommended for a healthy and balanced diet since it is considered a highly digestible food.
- Its mono-unsaturated acids and oleic acid help control bad cholesterol and regulate good cholesterol.
|Per 100 grams||Value|
|Energy value||1138 kJ/ 272 Kcal|