Asiago and Speck Alto Adige ham, two foods that bare the EU symbols of excellence. These symbols, PDO and PGI, guarantee the products are from the official place of origin (in this case, Italy) and that they adhere to strict production standards that have been in place for hundreds of years.
These geographically protected Italian foods are made in a specific region, under strict guidelines, and with traditional methods that all play a huge role in the final flavor profile and characteristics of each one.
Why you should look for the PDO and PGI symbols! Why are they so important!
Protected Designation of Origin, or PDO, foods have the strongest possible links to original historical practices, because both the raw ingredients and production must come from or happen within the original area. Protected Geographical Indication, or PGI, only differ in that the raw ingredients (like the milk or the pig for ham) can be sourced outside the specific limited production area, though still within the EU, but the same rigorous production standards apply. Learn more here: http://bit.ly/2lJrzlk
Make sure it’s Real!!
When buying Asiago which comes in two ages, fresh (or fresco) and aged (or stagionato). It’s actually harder to find Italian Asiago than you think. …..make sure you look for Asiago PDO so you know you are getting the real deal. http://uncommoneurope.eu/asiago-pdo/
- To ensure that you are buying the authentic Asiago PDO from Italy, look on the rind for the word “Asiago” pressed into it.
- Tastes of fresh milk and melts easily on your tongue
- Made from cow’s milk
- Presence of lactic cultures, similar to yogurt, helps to support digestive health
Fresh Asiago PDO is softer and melts easier while the aged Asiago PDO is harder and great for serving in chunks as a snack or app.
Speck Alto Adige PGI
Authentic Speck always comes from the Alto Adige region of Italy, hence the complete name Speck Alto Adige. It can be served diced, in strips or thinly sliced like prosciutto but either way its smokey and deliciously herby flavor are inimitable. http://uncommoneurope.eu/speck-alto-adige-pgi/
- Mild salty with an herb, spices, and light smoky taste
- Hand slicing brings out more flavor
- Herb crust can be left on for a spicier taste
- Pork rind should be cut off
Now that you’re educated on these family loved Italian products, let’s get to the recipe!
Asiago and Speck Italian Stuffed Chicken
Note** When buying the products, you will be able to use them for more than one recipe as well as eat on their own because they come in a block.
Boneless chicken breast
Speck Alto Adige PGI (sliced thin- taking off rind)
Fresh Asiago PDO
- Clean chicken breast and butterfly
- Place in baking dish
- Add one slice of Speck Alto Adige
- Add shallots
- Add one slice of Fresh Asiago
- Close breast
- Pour 1/2 C red wine over chicken
- Sprinkle with salt
- Place another slice of fresh Asiago on top of chicken breast
- Bake at 375 for 35 mins or until chicken is done (ovens vary)