Embedded with protected geographical indication. Raw cured meat product, made with selected pork meat, minced and seasoned with paprika, salt and spices stuffed into casings and mature slowly and carefully as the experience from generation to generation. The taste is mild and pleasant and spices are present in the aftertaste.
The former need to preserve meat made very different procedures were developed to extend its life. One of them, no doubt, chopping, seasoning and curing of meat.
The first mention, the sausage as we know, appears in the seventeenth century, citing that were stored in a cupboard “one hundred sobrasadas and thirty llonganizas…”, and this same period there are many references to meat consumption Pork and its by-products, and the festivities that were made on the occasion of the matances (the slaughtering of a pig).
In the twentieth century processors incorporate new equipment and technology to the process of drafting the sobrasada to ensure product quality, while preserving the characteristics and typical presentations of sobrasadas traditionally made in family killings.
In late 1993, the Government of the Balearic Islands recognized the Specific Denomination Sobrasada de Mallorca and in early 1996, the European Union’s protected designation of Mallorca Sobrasada with the name of quality: Protected Geographical Indication, which extends the protection initially granted in Spain, the whole territory of the European Union.
Protected Geographical Indication Sobrasada de Mallorca
The Sobrasada de Mallorca protected geographical indication covers two types of sobrasada:
· Majorcan Sobrasada: made from selected pork meats.
· Black pig Majorcan Sobrasada: made exclusively from Majorcan black pig meat and stuffed into natural casings. The pigs are reared and fed on the island of Mallorca in accordance with traditional practices.
To make Sobrasada de Mallorca the following ingredients must be used, in proportionate quantities established in the corresponding regulation for this protected geographical indication:
- Lean pork meat: between 30 and 60%.
- Bacon: between 40 and 70%.
- Paprika (Capsicum annuum and/or C. longum): between 4 and 7%.
- Salt: between 1.8 and 2.8%.
- Spices and/or natural aromas: pepper, spicy paprika, rosemary, thyme and oregano.
- The use of colorants is expressly forbidden.
- The guts used may be natural or made with collagen fibre (in the last case for sausages weighing under 500 g).
With these ingredients, following manufacturing procedures that are specified in the PGI regulation, top-quality sobrasada is obtained, conserving the traditional aspects that characterize and distinguish it.
The manufacturing process consists of two different stages. The first is the making of the sausage itself (which in turn includes the mincing Mallorcan Sobrasada – Balearic Islands – Agrifoodstuffs, designations of origin and Balearic gastronomy of the raw materials, their blending with other ingredients and subsequent insertion in the gut casing) and a second stage, when the product is cured and dried.
The raw materials are minced mechanically, using a mincing machine, producing pieces of mincemeat smaller than 6 mm in size (normally between 3 and 5 mm in diameter). During this stage, the muscular fibre is more or less destroyed, so that it is easier to mix the meat with the other ingredients. This stage facilitates the action of enzymes and microorganisms, due to the incorporation of oxygen and the partial destruction of the muscle fibre. The meat is then mixed with salt and spices.
In continuation, the mixture is inserted in the guts and the curing stage commences in drying rooms, where the controlled temperature and humidity brings about a series of changes in the product’s physical, chemical and microbiological properties. These changes give the sobrasada its unique aroma, taste, consistency, colour and stability.
The stage when Sobrassada de Mallorca is cured takes place at temperatures of between 14 and 16ºC with a relative humidity of between 70 and 85%. The duration of this process depends on the sausage’s size.
During this phase two basic phenomena occur. One is physical (the drying of the sausage) and the other biochemical, the result of fermentation.