Renaissance of the old breeds
Pork is undergoing a renaissance in top gastronomy. The trend is shifting back from the artificially bred, fat-free hybrids to original breeds of pig, which are capable of forming intramuscular fat tissue. This gives their meat its trademark tenderness and succulence. The traditional “montanera” feeding method, which is based primarily on acorns, further adds a uniquely nutty note.
Why is pork so popular in Germany?
Pork is the favourite meat of the German people. Statistically speaking, every German buys and consumes 35 kilograms of pork every year (source: Meat Atlas, 2014). It may come as a surprise, then, that Germans have only been rearing pigs commercially since the mid-nineteenth century. These pigs changed considerably within a period of a hundred years. While domestic pigs were still rotund and fat, modern breeds are distinguished by their long and slender build. This evolution in appearance is due to two additional pairs of ribs (a result of selective breeding) and 50 per cent less fat than their ancestors.
Preparation of pork
Many consumers appreciate the wide range of ways in which this usually lean, pink meat can be prepared. But: the lower the fat content, the weaker the own flavour of the meat. This is why many pork dishes are prepared with a sauce or marinade. The original pig breeds do not have this issue; their meat is a visibly deeper shade of red, lined with fine fat veins. It has a distinct, pleasant taste and needs no more than a pinch of salt for seasoning.