Unveiling the Secrets of Nduja: Spice, Spreadability, and a Toastie Triumph
So, What is Nduja?
Nduja is a type of spicy, spreadable pork sausage originating from Calabria, a region in southern Italy. It’s renowned for its fiery flavour and smooth texture, making it a unique and versatile ingredient in various dishes. The main ingredients in Nduja include:
– Pork: Typically a mix of meat from the head, trimmings, and other cuts.
– Chili Peppers: Responsible for the heat that defines Nduja.
– Salt: Essential for flavour and preservation.
– Herbs and Spices: Depending on the producer, variations in seasoning may occur.
Nduja is cured and fermented, giving it a distinct taste. It’s often used as a spread on bread or incorporated into pasta dishes, adding a bold kick to the meal.
Is Nduja the Same as Chorizo?
While both Nduja and chorizo are cured pork sausages, they have notable differences. Chorizo is a Spanish sausage, and its flavour profile varies from mild to hot. It is usually made with ground pork and paprika. On the other hand, Nduja is softer, spreadable, and intensely spicy due to the inclusion of Calabrian chilli peppers. The texture and level of spiciness set Nduja apart from chorizo.
Is Nduja Sausage Very Hot?
Yes, Nduja is known for being quite hot. The inclusion of Calabrian chilli peppers, which are notorious for their heat, gives Nduja its spicy kick. The level of spiciness can vary between producers, so it’s always a good idea to check the label or ask for recommendations if you prefer a milder or more intense heat.
Can Nduja be Eaten Raw?
Yes, Nduja can be eaten raw, and it is often enjoyed this way. Its spreadable consistency makes it perfect for spreading on bread, crackers, or adding to sandwiches without the need for cooking. The fermentation and curing process ensures that it’s safe to eat without cooking, allowing you to experience its full, robust flavour.
Nduja Pan Toastie with Mozzarella, Honey & Fennel Seed Recipe
- 4 slices of Sourdough Bread (1cm thick)
- 35g Fratelli Beretta Nduja (Half a pack)
- 125g Mozzarella (drained weight)
- 2 tsps. Set Honey
- ½ tsp. Ground Fennel Seeds
- 1 tbsp. Regular Olive Oil
- 20g Butter (5g per slice of bread)
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- Room Temperature Preparation: Take Nduja out of the fridge to reach room temperature for easy spreading.
- Preheat the Oven: Set the oven to 200°C / 180°C Fan.
- Assemble the Sandwich:
- Spread Nduja on two slices of sourdough.
- On the other slices, spread honey and sprinkle fennel seeds.
- Pat dry the mozzarella, tear it into pieces, and place it on Nduja-covered slices.
- Add black pepper and complete the sandwich.
- Butter and Pan Toast:
- Spread butter on the top slices.
- In a pan with olive oil on low heat, cook sandwiches for 1 minute with the lid on.
- Flip, add more butter, and cook for another minute.
- Oven Finish: Place the pan in the oven for a golden-brown crust and melted centre
- Serve: Check for doneness, remove from the oven, and serve immediately.
Enjoy the spicy, sweet, crispy, and gooey delight of this Nduja Pan Toastie – a perfect balance of indulgence and flavour!