There is an occupation in Spain that is called “Maestro Cortador” (Carving Master). These guys carve Jamón for a living and usually they have been doing that for generations. Just to say that carving poperly a Jamón is not obvious. But with good tools (Ham stand, Ham Knife and Sharpener) and these key tips, you’ll be carving jamón in no time and become the master of your jamón parties!
Pay attention! Here we go:
1.- Your knife should be perfectly sharpened every time you start carving.
2.- Carve your Jamón Ibérico at room temperature (70º-73º F)
3.- Remove the outer fat only from the area you are going to start eating. (Save some slices of the removed fat to cover the exposed meat once finished carving for the day).
4.- Cut thin, almost transparent bite-sized slices.
5.- Keep flat the cutting surface of the ham. This is very important in order to make the most of your jamón, and it also makes it easier to obtain thin slices.
6.- To preserve the Jamón Ibérico, once finished carving for the day, keep it in a cool dry place, cover the exposed meat with some slices of the removed fat, and cover the whole piece with a cheesecloth.
7.- When you find the hipbone, insert the knife around the bone to separate the meat from the bone. By doing this the subsequent slices will detach easily and will be clean and neat.
8.- When you get to the bone it’s time to turn the jamón.
9.- Remove the fat from the “babilla”. Continue slicing and don’t forget to keep flat the cutting surface, as described previously.
10.- Again insert the knife around the bone to separate the meat from the bone. Continue slicing and enjoying until you get to the bone. The rest of the bones will still have some delicious jamón that you should cut into small chunks to enjoy as a “tapa” or to cook great recipes.