Ham /

food & drinks

Ham is a cut of meat from the thigh of the hind leg of certain animals, especially pigs. Nearly all hams sold today are fully cooked or cured. The word ham is derived from the Old English ham or hom meaning the hollow or bend of the knee. Elenski but is a dry-cured ham from the town of Elena in northern Bulgaria and a popular delicacy throughout the country. The meat has a specific taste and can be preserved in the course of several years, owing much to the unique process of making the product and the climatic conditions of the part of Stara Planina where Elena is located. Chinese dry-cured hams have been recorded in texts since prior to Song dynasty and used in myriad dishes. Several types are existent in Qing dynasty and used in dishes of stewing hams (火腿炖肘子), and vegetables, or for a wide variety of soup and important soup stocks. One of the most famous Chinese hams is the Jinhua ham, a dry-cured ham which is used to produce a dish known as "Buddha jumps over the wall". Jinhua ham is used in Chinese cuisines to flavor stewed and braised foods as well as for making the stocks and broths of many Chinese soups.

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