Store cured meat carefully to keep it in peak condition.
– Once cured meat is cut, it can dry out easily so keep it covered in the fridge.
– When you buy cured meat that is sliced, eat it within 2 days. Keep it in the fridge in the paper it came in (preferably waxed or greaseproof paper).
– If you buy a whole piece of pancetta you can keep it longer, but no longer than a week. You need to check it before you use it. It should smell fresh and sweet.
– Cut away the end of any whole piece of cured meat that has been exposed to the air before you use it.
– Never eat the skin on any cured meat or give it to a child who could choke on the rind.
– Always buy your cured meats from a trusted source where you are sure that the cold chain has been maintained and that the cured meats, if they are whole, have been hung in ideal conditions.
– In supermarkets, choose packaged cured meats from the back of the chilled cabinet and pick a package with the longest date.
If you are unsure of the freshness of a piece of cured meat, throw it away.