A genuine meat product from Bajo Guadalhorce

The salchichón from Málaga is one of the most singular products on Spain. It has different characteristics that define it, such as its soft texture. Besides a very concrete recipe and ingredientes—pork and spices—, the short curation period is also important. According to quality regulations that protect this salchichón from Málaga, this is a “meat product made with a mixture of minced and chopped meat, pork or pork and cow, and bacon and pork fat, seasoned with salt, spices and condiments.”

As it is stated in the Royal Decree 474/2014 from the 13th of June of the Spanish Official Bulletin of the State, this product has to be rolled and pressed “in natural guts with a minimum size of 30 milimitres and a curved shape and it must be matured for a short period of time that will give the salchichón its texture, flavour and smell characteristics.”

There are currently several companis that produce this artisanal meat product, which almost disappeared in the 1990s. One of them is located in Cártama and it is considered as the first that made a salchichón recipe in Málaga in the beginning of the XIX century. Other companies from this village or near it also produce meat products. Despite respecting the quality regulations of this meat product, each company offers varieties that prove the genuine character of the salchichón from Málaga. Salchichón is a great snack but lately it has shown its versatility in the current cuisine. In fact, some prestigious chefs have used it in surprising recipes that prove its singularity. Today there are some famous dishes such as the salchichón tartar or pâté. Some cookers have even used salchichón as a filling for croquettes.

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Salchichón from Málaga is a traditional product from Cártama, in the area of Bajo Guadalhorce, where it had its origin. In fact, the two local companies that started to distribute it still exist. Other meat factories in the area also produce this product, both in Campanillas and Alhaurín El Grande. There is no doubt that the salchichón is linked with this fertile region in Valle del Guadalhorce, which is famous not only for its critics and vegetables but also for these artisanal meat products.

According to some historical texts, it looks like the creator of the salchichón from Málaga is the Prolongo company, located in Málaga. Its fist factory, founded in 1820, was the first place to make this product. Apparently, they used an Italian recipe in order to make this salchichón. In fact, it could be similar to the one that was used to make ‘salame’ in Genoa, although there were some details that would change to adapt to the tradition in Málaga. This product, that is highly valued in the province of Málaga, was very common in the snacks of many residents in the XX century.

The salchichón from Málaga has some qualities that differentiate it from others pork meat products. It is richer in water and has a lower content of fats —less than 50 grammes per each 100 grammes. However, it has more protein than other pok products, with 37 grammes or more per each 100 grammmes, as it is stated in the quality regulations that protect this product from Málaga.