Italian pancetta (IPA2|panˈtʃetːa, pronounced "pan-CHEH-tah") or Spanish panceta (IPA2|panˈθeta) is a type of dry cured meat. It is pork belly that has been salt cured, salted and spiced (nutmeg, pepper, fennel, dried ground hot peppers and garlic are often featured), and dried for about three months (but usually not smoked). There are many varieties, and in Italy each region produces its own type. In Corsica it is considered a regional flavour.

Pancetta can be rolled (see photograph), or straight (with all the fat on one side). The straight variety is more common in Italy and Spain than elsewhere, especially where home-made pancetta is still produced.

When served on its own, the rolled pancetta is presented in very thin slices. More often it is used to flavour other dishes, especially pasta sauces. Recipes such as "all’amatriciana" often contain pancetta as a substitute for guanciale, which is much more difficult to find outside of Italy.

In Spain, medium to long and relatively thick portions are also served as a side dish, usually fried in olive oil or its own fat. Fried eggs with chorizo and panceta is considered a popular hearty breakfast in some rural parts of the country.

In the United Kingdom, Pancetta is more commonly sold as packs of cubed belly (rather than rolled). It has recently gained in popularity, to the point where it is now frequently available in supermarkets.

ee also


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  • pancetta — pan·cét·ta s.f. 1. dim. → pancia 2. CO spec. scherz., lieve prominenza del ventre, solitamente dovuta a eccesso di alimentazione: ha messo su un po di pancetta 3. CO lardo striato di carne della regione ventrale del suino, salato insieme alla… …   Dizionario italiano

  • pancetta — s. f. 1. dim. di pancia 2. (fam.) ventre, adipe 3. (di maiale) CFR. lardo, guanciale FRASEOLOGIA mettere su pancetta, (fam.) ingrassare □ pancetta affumicata …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • Pancetta — Pan|cet|ta [pan t̮ʃɛta; ital. pancetta, Vkl. von pancia = Bauch < lat. pantex (Abl. pantice) = Wanst]: [Bauch]speck vom Schwein aus Italien …   Universal-Lexikon

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