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Thread: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

  1. #1
    Theron Guest

    Default Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Do any NG posters know why it's not advised, at least as far as I know, to
    eat a
    Smithfield or Country ham without cooking it? I don't see that it's any
    different than a dry cured "proscuitto" ham. I can't imagine these are any
    more organism free than proscuitto is. I don't know what the generic term
    for proscuitto is. Our butcher hangs curing Country Hams behind his butcher
    counter and sells them as home made "proscuitto". I don't think he's doing
    anything derelict. I think he's doing just what Volpi in Milwaukee does.

    RE: proscuitto: What's the taste difference between non nitrate raw ham, as
    is Proscuitto
    Parma, and nitrate containing, as in most other proscuitto type hams?

    RE: sliced country ham: How would you cook individual slices?

    RE: country ham: The two country hams I have tried to cook have more or less
    been disasters. They ended up too dry and the meat fell apart. How do you do
    it?

    TIA

    Ed



  2. #2
    Omelet Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    In article <h8lt2s$8k9$[email protected]>,
    "Theron" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Do any NG posters know why it's not advised, at least as far as I know, to
    > eat a
    > Smithfield or Country ham without cooking it? I don't see that it's any
    > different than a dry cured "proscuitto" ham. I can't imagine these are any
    > more organism free than proscuitto is. I don't know what the generic term
    > for proscuitto is. Our butcher hangs curing Country Hams behind his butcher
    > counter and sells them as home made "proscuitto". I don't think he's doing
    > anything derelict. I think he's doing just what Volpi in Milwaukee does.
    >
    > RE: proscuitto: What's the taste difference between non nitrate raw ham, as
    > is Proscuitto
    > Parma, and nitrate containing, as in most other proscuitto type hams?
    >
    > RE: sliced country ham: How would you cook individual slices?
    >
    > RE: country ham: The two country hams I have tried to cook have more or less
    > been disasters. They ended up too dry and the meat fell apart. How do you do
    > it?
    >
    > TIA
    >
    > Ed


    I eat Smithfield hams without cooking them ALL the time!
    Hasn't killed me yet...
    --
    Peace! Om

    "Human nature seems to be to control other people until they put their foot down."
    --Steve Rothstein

    [email protected]
    Subscribe: [email protected]

  3. #3
    Mark Thorson Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Theron wrote:
    >
    > Do any NG posters know why it's not advised, at least as far as I know, to
    > eat a
    > Smithfield or Country ham without cooking it? I don't see that it's any
    > different than a dry cured "proscuitto" ham. I can't imagine these are any
    > more organism free than proscuitto is. I don't know what the generic term
    > for proscuitto is. Our butcher hangs curing Country Hams behind his butcher
    > counter and sells them as home made "proscuitto". I don't think he's doing
    > anything derelict. I think he's doing just what Volpi in Milwaukee does.


    Although the rate of trichina worm infection among pigs
    is low, it isn't zero in typical pig operations. It is
    zero in certified worm-free herds like those used to make
    prosciutto.

    Pigs are omnivores, and they will catch and kill rats.
    This is how they can become infected. If a pig operation
    has any possibilities of rats being present, there is a
    possibility of trichina worm infection. Most pig farms
    can't guarantee a rat-free environment.

  4. #4
    RegForte Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Mark Thorson wrote:

    > Theron wrote:
    >
    >>Do any NG posters know why it's not advised, at least as far as I know, to
    >>eat a
    >>Smithfield or Country ham without cooking it? I don't see that it's any
    >>different than a dry cured "proscuitto" ham. I can't imagine these are any
    >>more organism free than proscuitto is. I don't know what the generic term
    >>for proscuitto is. Our butcher hangs curing Country Hams behind his butcher
    >>counter and sells them as home made "proscuitto". I don't think he's doing
    >>anything derelict. I think he's doing just what Volpi in Milwaukee does.

    >
    >
    > Although the rate of trichina worm infection among pigs
    > is low, it isn't zero in typical pig operations. It is
    > zero in certified worm-free herds like those used to make
    > prosciutto.
    >
    > Pigs are omnivores, and they will catch and kill rats.
    > This is how they can become infected. If a pig operation
    > has any possibilities of rats being present, there is a
    > possibility of trichina worm infection. Most pig farms
    > can't guarantee a rat-free environment.


    Dude, trichinea isn't an issue. The trichinea infection
    rate in country ham is zero. Period.

    Doesn't matter if the meat was initially infected or not.
    It won't be after the drying process.

    The concern is more likely about mold.

  5. #5
    Doug Freyburger Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Theron wrote:
    >
    > RE: sliced country ham: How would you cook individual slices?


    I pan fry. But I have diced and used country ham as if it were
    prosciutto so I have ignored the advice to cook it at times.

    > RE: country ham: The two country hams I have tried to cook have more or less
    > been disasters. They ended up too dry and the meat fell apart. How do you do
    > it?


    My try was also a disaster. It ended up moist but stinky.

    Now I slice a country ham as soon as I buy it and use the
    slices. One ham yields many slices and as much as I like
    country ham every so often I don't like it regularly. A
    week or most between slices and the ham lasts all year
    pulling a slice at a time our of the freezer.

    I've found Canadian "prosciutto" at Costco a couple of times.
    I don't care that's it's theoretically a knock-off the stuff
    is delicious. Once I put a whole one in the freezer then
    thawed it and tried to cook it as a country ham. Equal
    disaster. If I ever see it again at Costco I'll get one
    and slice it then freeze the slices. That worked so well
    I'm now doing it with US country hams.

  6. #6
    Mark Thorson Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    RegForte wrote:
    >
    > Dude, trichinea isn't an issue. The trichinea infection
    > rate in country ham is zero. Period.
    >
    > Doesn't matter if the meat was initially infected or not.
    > It won't be after the drying process.
    >
    > The concern is more likely about mold.


    Wrong. Drying is not effective in killing the
    encysted parasite larvae in muscle tissue.

    If drying were effective, then the outbreak
    in Idaho in 1995 caused by eating cougar jerky
    would never have occurred.

    http://wonder.cdc.gov/wonder/prevgui...1/m0040621.asp

  7. #7
    RegForte Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Mark Thorson wrote:

    > RegForte wrote:
    >
    >>Dude, trichinea isn't an issue. The trichinea infection
    >>rate in country ham is zero. Period.
    >>
    >>Doesn't matter if the meat was initially infected or not.
    >>It won't be after the drying process.
    >>
    >>The concern is more likely about mold.

    >
    >
    > Wrong. Drying is not effective in killing the
    > encysted parasite larvae in muscle tissue.
    >
    > If drying were effective, then the outbreak
    > in Idaho in 1995 caused by eating cougar jerky
    > would never have occurred.
    >
    > http://wonder.cdc.gov/wonder/prevgui...1/m0040621.asp



    The OP wasn't asking about what amateurs do in their backyard.
    He's asking about commercial products. They impose quality
    control and actually measure the critical parameters in the
    product.

    There's never been a single case of trichinosis involving
    commercialy produced country ham.

  8. #8
    Kathleen Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Mark Thorson wrote:

    > RegForte wrote:
    >
    >>Dude, trichinea isn't an issue. The trichinea infection
    >>rate in country ham is zero. Period.
    >>
    >>Doesn't matter if the meat was initially infected or not.
    >>It won't be after the drying process.
    >>
    >>The concern is more likely about mold.

    >
    >
    > Wrong. Drying is not effective in killing the
    > encysted parasite larvae in muscle tissue.
    >
    > If drying were effective, then the outbreak
    > in Idaho in 1995 caused by eating cougar jerky
    > would never have occurred.
    >
    > http://wonder.cdc.gov/wonder/prevgui...1/m0040621.asp


    Egads. That's disgusting. How hungry do you have to be to eat dried cat?


  9. #9
    Mark Thorson Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    RegForte wrote:
    >
    > Mark Thorson wrote:
    >
    > > RegForte wrote:
    > >
    > >>Dude, trichinea isn't an issue. The trichinea infection
    > >>rate in country ham is zero. Period.
    > >>
    > >>Doesn't matter if the meat was initially infected or not.
    > >>It won't be after the drying process.
    > >>
    > >>The concern is more likely about mold.

    > >
    > >
    > > Wrong. Drying is not effective in killing the
    > > encysted parasite larvae in muscle tissue.
    > >
    > > If drying were effective, then the outbreak
    > > in Idaho in 1995 caused by eating cougar jerky
    > > would never have occurred.
    > >
    > > http://wonder.cdc.gov/wonder/prevgui...1/m0040621.asp

    >
    > The OP wasn't asking about what amateurs do in their backyard.
    > He's asking about commercial products. They impose quality
    > control and actually measure the critical parameters in the
    > product.


    I only cited that to prove drying is not effective
    in killing trichina larvae.

    > There's never been a single case of trichinosis involving
    > commercialy produced country ham.


    I find that very difficult to believe. Can you cite
    a reliable source for that?

  10. #10
    RegForte Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Mark Thorson wrote:

    > RegForte wrote:
    >
    >>
    >>The OP wasn't asking about what amateurs do in their backyard.
    >>He's asking about commercial products. They impose quality
    >>control and actually measure the critical parameters in the
    >>product.

    >
    >
    > I only cited that to prove drying is not effective
    > in killing trichina larvae.
    >


    All drying is not equal, just like all "low pH" thresholds
    are not equal. It's a question of degree. Country ham is
    air dried and cured for almost a year. The resulting water
    activity level is well below 0.9.

    >
    >>There's never been a single case of trichinosis involving
    >>commercialy produced country ham.

    >
    >
    > I find that very difficult to believe. Can you cite
    > a reliable source for that?


    It doesn't work that way. They document cases that do
    exist, not ones that don't

    If you're really interested, do a search on MMWR. It
    goes back years.

    http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/

  11. #11
    Mark Thorson Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    RegForte wrote:
    >
    > Mark Thorson wrote:
    >
    > > RegForte wrote:
    > >
    > >>There's never been a single case of trichinosis involving
    > >>commercialy produced country ham.

    > >
    > > I find that very difficult to believe. Can you cite
    > > a reliable source for that?

    >
    > It doesn't work that way. They document cases that do
    > exist, not ones that don't
    >
    > If you're really interested, do a search on MMWR. It
    > goes back years.
    >
    > http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/


    In other words, your evidence for that statement
    is exactly equivalent to the evidence for your statement
    that drying would render even infected country ham safe,
    is that right? In other words, no evidence at all.

    When the extremely high incidence of trichina infection
    in pork at the turn of the century is considered, your
    assertion that nobody has ever gotten trichinosis from
    a country ham seems implausible, if not ludicrous.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jungle

  12. #12
    RegForte Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Mark Thorson wrote:
    > RegForte wrote:
    >
    >>Mark Thorson wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>>RegForte wrote:
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>>There's never been a single case of trichinosis involving
    >>>>commercialy produced country ham.
    >>>
    >>>I find that very difficult to believe. Can you cite
    >>>a reliable source for that?

    >>
    >>It doesn't work that way. They document cases that do
    >>exist, not ones that don't
    >>
    >>If you're really interested, do a search on MMWR. It
    >>goes back years.
    >>
    >>http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/

    >
    >
    > In other words, your evidence for that statement
    > is exactly equivalent to the evidence for your statement
    > that drying would render even infected country ham safe,
    > is that right? In other words, no evidence at all.
    >


    No, my assertion is based on years of reading, studying,
    and producing cured pork products of all types.

    You want evidence? Here's a portion of a recent study that
    confirms exactly what I've been saying.

    QUOTE:

    Although no food borne illnesses have been directly related to country
    hams there have been outbreaks in similar products such as dried sausages.

    Title: Development of appropriate intervention methods to reduce the
    occurrence of pathogenic bacteria on Country-cured hams -NPB # 01-143

    Investigator: William Benjy Mikel
    Institution: University of Kentucky
    Date Received: 11/30/2002

    <http://www.pork.org/PorkScience/Research/Documents/01-143-MIKEL-UofKY.pdf>


    > When the extremely high incidence of trichina infection
    > in pork at the turn of the century is considered, your
    > assertion that nobody has ever gotten trichinosis from
    > a country ham seems implausible, if not ludicrous.
    >
    > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jungle



    A 100 year old book? I'm laughing.

  13. #13
    Mark Thorson Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    RegForte wrote:
    >
    > Mark Thorson wrote:
    > >
    > > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jungle

    >
    > A 100 year old book? I'm laughing.


    You did say "never", not "the last 10 years"
    or something like that. That's why I find
    your unsupported assertion implausible.

    The idea that nobody ever got trichinosis
    from a country ham is absurd. Infected pork
    was common back then.

  14. #14
    sf Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    On Mon, 14 Sep 2009 13:36:45 -0500, Omelet <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >I eat Smithfield hams without cooking them ALL the time!
    >Hasn't killed me yet...
    >--

    Do you soak them first? They're awfully salty!

    --
    I love cooking with wine.
    Sometimes I even put it in the food.

  15. #15
    RegForte Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    Mark Thorson wrote:

    > RegForte wrote:
    >
    >>Mark Thorson wrote:
    >>
    >>>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jungle

    >>
    >>A 100 year old book? I'm laughing.

    >
    >
    > You did say "never", not "the last 10 years"
    > or something like that. That's why I find
    > your unsupported assertion implausible.
    >



    Seems to me it's implied, doncha think?

    Cause, um, the OP never mentioned climbing into a time machine
    to eat his dinner. Or did I miss that?

    > The idea that nobody ever got trichinosis
    > from a country ham is absurd. Infected pork
    > was common back then.


    You're right, it no doubt it happened a time or two back in
    The Middle Ages. I should have addressed that. LOL

    You crack me up. This is the closest you've ever come to actually
    admitting you're wrong in your steady stream of food safety
    fear mongering.


  16. #16
    blake murphy Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    On Mon, 14 Sep 2009 12:21:27 -0700, Mark Thorson wrote:

    > Theron wrote:
    >>
    >> Do any NG posters know why it's not advised, at least as far as I know, to
    >> eat a
    >> Smithfield or Country ham without cooking it? I don't see that it's any
    >> different than a dry cured "proscuitto" ham. I can't imagine these are any
    >> more organism free than proscuitto is. I don't know what the generic term
    >> for proscuitto is. Our butcher hangs curing Country Hams behind his butcher
    >> counter and sells them as home made "proscuitto". I don't think he's doing
    >> anything derelict. I think he's doing just what Volpi in Milwaukee does.

    >
    > Although the rate of trichina worm infection among pigs
    > is low, it isn't zero in typical pig operations. It is
    > zero in certified worm-free herds like those used to make
    > prosciutto.
    >
    > Pigs are omnivores, and they will catch and kill rats.
    > This is how they can become infected. If a pig operation
    > has any possibilities of rats being present, there is a
    > possibility of trichina worm infection. Most pig farms
    > can't guarantee a rat-free environment.


    you are a million times more likely to be hit by lightning than you are to
    get trichinosis from a domestic american pig.

    besides, doesn't worrying about that take up valuable time that you could
    be spending worrying about contracting mad cow disease?

    your pal,
    blake

  17. #17
    blake murphy Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    On Mon, 14 Sep 2009 13:24:24 -0700, Mark Thorson wrote:

    > RegForte wrote:
    >>
    >> Dude, trichinea isn't an issue. The trichinea infection
    >> rate in country ham is zero. Period.
    >>
    >> Doesn't matter if the meat was initially infected or not.
    >> It won't be after the drying process.
    >>
    >> The concern is more likely about mold.

    >
    > Wrong. Drying is not effective in killing the
    > encysted parasite larvae in muscle tissue.
    >
    > If drying were effective, then the outbreak
    > in Idaho in 1995 caused by eating cougar jerky
    > would never have occurred.
    >
    > http://wonder.cdc.gov/wonder/prevgui...1/m0040621.asp


    news flash! cougars aren't pigs!

    blake

  18. #18
    blake murphy Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    On Mon, 14 Sep 2009 19:49:57 -0700, Mark Thorson wrote:

    > RegForte wrote:
    >>
    >> Mark Thorson wrote:
    >>
    >>> RegForte wrote:
    >>>
    >>>>There's never been a single case of trichinosis involving
    >>>>commercialy produced country ham.
    >>>
    >>> I find that very difficult to believe. Can you cite
    >>> a reliable source for that?

    >>
    >> It doesn't work that way. They document cases that do
    >> exist, not ones that don't
    >>
    >> If you're really interested, do a search on MMWR. It
    >> goes back years.
    >>
    >> http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/

    >
    > In other words, your evidence for that statement
    > is exactly equivalent to the evidence for your statement
    > that drying would render even infected country ham safe,
    > is that right? In other words, no evidence at all.
    >
    > When the extremely high incidence of trichina infection
    > in pork at the turn of the century is considered, your
    > assertion that nobody has ever gotten trichinosis from
    > a country ham seems implausible, if not ludicrous.
    >
    > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jungle


    um, that was the turn of the *last* century, more than 100 years ago. do
    you worry about cholera in your drinking water, too?

    blake

  19. #19
    Omelet Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    In article <[email protected]>,
    sf <[email protected]> wrote:

    > On Mon, 14 Sep 2009 13:36:45 -0500, Omelet <[email protected]>
    > wrote:
    >
    > >I eat Smithfield hams without cooking them ALL the time!
    > >Hasn't killed me yet...
    > >--

    > Do you soak them first? They're awfully salty!


    Not to date. They are most often served mixed with other stuff. That
    reduces the salt.

    I have had them cut into steaks, but those are usually steamed. I guess
    that more or less counts as "soaking"?
    --
    Peace! Om

    "Human nature seems to be to control other people until they put their foot down."
    --Steve Rothstein

    [email protected]
    Subscribe: [email protected]

  20. #20
    Mark Thorson Guest

    Default Re: Smithfield and Proscuitto Ham??

    RegForte wrote:
    >
    > Mark Thorson wrote:
    >
    > > You did say "never", not "the last 10 years"
    > > or something like that. That's why I find
    > > your unsupported assertion implausible.
    > >

    >
    > Seems to me it's implied, doncha think?


    If you had said "recently" or something like
    that, it would have been implied. But saying
    "never" is quite specific. It means "not ever".
    >
    > Cause, um, the OP never mentioned climbing into a time machine
    > to eat his dinner. Or did I miss that?


    When I was in college, pork still carried
    a great enough risk that it was always
    recommended to be fully cooked.

    > > The idea that nobody ever got trichinosis
    > > from a country ham is absurd. Infected pork
    > > was common back then.

    >
    > You're right, it no doubt it happened a time or two back in
    > The Middle Ages. I should have addressed that. LOL


    It was happening in the U.S. frequently,
    at least into the 1970's. It still happens
    today in many foreign countries.

    > You crack me up. This is the closest you've ever come to actually
    > admitting you're wrong in your steady stream of food safety
    > fear mongering.


    It's still a real risk, but greatly reduced
    because of progress in the pork industry.
    I'll eat prosciutto raw, but not any other
    pork product. The risk is small, but it's
    not zero. Any conventionally raised pig could
    catch and eat an infected rat. Meat from
    infected pigs cannnot be made safe by drying,
    smoking, freezing, etc. Only high-temperature
    processing or irradiation can make pork safe
    to eat if it is infected.

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