What is Pancetta?

Halal Food and Quality Logo

Ah, Italy.

If there’s one country in the entire world that’s known for its pure love and devotion towards great food, it’s Italy.

Some of the most wonderful and widespread culinary experiences you’ll even enjoy have an Italian origin. If you’ve ever enjoyed pasta, spaghetti, or a pizza, then you have Italy to thank for your meal. Of course, there’s also so much more to the Italian experience than those mainstream foods. The country has had an influence on so many different cooking styles. Plus, it’s created ingredients and meats that people all over the world have fallen in love with.

One of those is pancetta. But pancetta is also a food that many Muslims will have avoided for various reasons that we’ll cover below. We’re going to tell you more about this Italian-style meat, as well as the changes that we’ve made to it to make it safe for halal consumption.

Explaining Pancetta

So, to the question that started off this post. What is pancetta?

On a basic level, you can think of pancetta as the Italian version of bacon. We already know that this description has set a few alarm bells ringing in your head. Bacon isn’t halal and, unfortunately, traditional pancetta isn’t either.

Pancetta is pork belly that differs from other types of bacon because it’s left unsmoked. Instead, the Italians use a combination of spices and salt to give the meat a unique flavouring. You’ll often find things like nutmeg, fennel, and pepper in the average pancetta.

It’s also a dried meat. After butchering, the Italians allow their pancetta to dry for a couple of months before making it available.

It usually comes in a rolled form, which allows the muscle and fat from the meat to create a sort of spiral that meshes the two together. However, it’s also available as a slab that has most of the fat on one side. This provides a range of cooking options. Rolled pancetta is usually unravelled and served in thin slices, whereas slab pancetta may be chopped or diced to add it to a dish.

Outside of Italy, the meat is often used to give a dish a “bacon” flavour while avoiding the smokiness that comes with bacon.

Of course, pork is not halal. As a result, all of this means very little to Muslims who want to eat pancetta. That’s why we stepped in to help.

Introducing Turkey Pancetta

There’s no reason for you to miss out on pancetta if you only eat halal meats. We’ve introduced a range of turkey pancetta that offers everything that you’re missing from the traditional Italian version while ensuring that you don’t eat any haram meats.

Our turkey pancetta also has the benefit of being healthier than the traditional Italian version. Because we’ve used poultry that’s been raised to be halal, you benefit from high protein levels and healthier fats when you eat our version of this classic Italian meat.

The greatest thing about food is the sheer amount of variety on offer. That’s something that we’ve tried to boost for all of our customers who want to try new things while staying halal.

We encourage you to give our turkey pancetta a try. You’ll find it in a range of major stores and supermarkets near you. Use our store locator to find out more.