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I would very much appreciate some information on the differences between pancetta and other similar meat products.
For example, I’m aware that “prosciutto” (which USA-wise actually means “prosciutto crudo” which means uncooked ham rather than what we tend to purchase in grocery stores, which is “cooked” ham. In Italy, prosciutto just means ham. cooked, raw, etc. Ham.) — anyway, prosciutto crudo is not allowed to be imported into USA. However, pancetta may be. Possibly on the idea that folks eat prosciutto crudo raw, and pancetta is sorta / kinda expected to be further cooked before eating.
On the idea of pancetta — Go, go, go! And believe in yourself!
I followed the conventional recipe for “duck breast ‘prosciutto'” which involved curing the duck breast overnight in salt, and then hanging the breast for a week to dry. It worked very well. Recently, as a safecut I decided to drybag the duck instead of hanging it “open” wrapped in cheesecloth.
I’d say that, drybagged, it needed more time to get the right texture. Flavor was GREAT — everybody ought to try this at least once. But I think that the loss of moisture in the drybag was maybe a bit slower than in the open air.
But — it’s great stuff. Try it.