Salami is a term that describes any encased meat product and is always made from pork. The origin of the word "salami" comes from the Latin word "salumen," which describes a mix of salted meats.
Salami has a history that goes back to before even ancient Roman times. There are many different variations of salami and each of the variations are quite different from one another. However, all salami goes through the same stages of processing. Salami is known most for its fineness of the ground meat, but different varieties have a different spice mix and a different type of meat consistency.
Salami is made with pork and blended with a particular ratio of high-quality pork fat. Then, it is seasoned with spices that may include salt, black pepper, mace, fennel, cinnamon, wine and garlic. Salami can be prepared in cooked, dry-cured or fresh varieties. The dry-cured salami is most often seen hanging in the butcher shops. This favorite snack does not have a long shelf life and once opened, must be eaten quickly. All varieties of salami will have the characteristics of a well compacted meat with a red and pink interior that is speckled with fine grains of white fat and the white fat bits should not separate from the meat when sliced.