Serrano ham has a longer shelf life than you may think, like other cured meats. Therefore, it’s critical to know how to store it for the long-term.
So, can you freeze Serrano ham? It’s actually not advised to freeze it, as low temperatures will damage the delicate, rich texture of the ham and its distinct sweet-salty flavor.
Most people find that freezing the ham is unnecessary anyway, as it can last for quite a while in the fridge.
However, if you really need to freeze it, I share some tips here that can help preserve the ham’s integrity and taste. Read on to find out more about freezing Serrano ham.
Can Serrano Ham Be Frozen?
You really shouldn’t freeze Serrano ham.
Freezing the ham removes the delicate and subtle flavors obtained via years of devoted breeding, growing, and curing.
Not being able to freeze it really shouldn’t be too much of a problem, though.
Since the ham goes through an extensive curing process, it can easily remain edible for up to three months without opening as long as the seal is solid.
Vacuum packaging extends the product’s expiration date and preserves the rich flavors that disappear when you freeze it.
Can You Freeze Sliced Serrano Ham?
Freezing sliced Serrano ham ruins the flavor of the meat, leaving the texture rubbery and tough.
It removes all of the delicacy’s beneficial properties.
Serrano ham should be stored at a 59 to 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit temperature and a humidity level of 65 percent.
How Long Can You Freeze Serrano Ham?
Depending on whether your ham is cured or uncured and cooked or raw, there are a few things you need to know about freezing Serrano ham.
First, if your ham has been cooked (maybe you enjoy it fried), it’ll remain good in the fridge for three to four days.
This holds for both cured and uncured (raw) cooked hams.
When you freeze leftover ham, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, then in aluminum foil, or arrange it in plastic freezer bags.
Here are different types of ham and how long you can freeze them.
|Uncured, Uncooked Serrano Ham||3-5 days in the fridge|
6 months in the freezer
|Uncured, Cooked Serrano Ham||3-4 days in the fridge|
3-4 months in the freezer
|Fully-cooked, Vacuum-sealed, and Unopened Serrano Ham||At least 2 weeks in the fridge|
Up to 2 months in the freezer
|Store-wrapped, Cooked, Whole Serrano Ham||3-5 days in the fridge|
2 months in the freezer
|Parma, Serrano Ham Raw and Cut||2-3 months in the fridge|
1 month in the freezer
Tips For Freezing Serrano Ham
Serving Serrano ham for holiday feasts is a centuries-old tradition.
Ham provides a substantial, satisfying supper, but one of the most excellent aspects of a Serrano ham dinner is that there are usually leftovers.
Freezing ham can help you keep this lean, tasty meat on hand for fast meals. Follow along with these few tips on how to freeze Serrano Ham.
Cool It Before Freezing
Some of the best methods include cooling the ham before freezing it.
Attempting to freeze lukewarm or warm foods is a common error, but it should be avoided to preserve the ham’s flavor.
Mark With the Date
It’s a good idea to mark the package with the date you freeze it.
Also, avoid layering the pieces until everything is completely frozen to ensure that you consume the ham when it is still at its finest in flavor and texture.
Put It In the Fridge
Refrigerate the ham for two to three hours before freezing to help it acquire a frozen state much faster.
This extends the time the ham is safe to eat while keeping the texture and flavor once defrosted.
Separate the Ham
Nothing is more annoying than taking a package of ham out of the freezer only to discover that you only need part of it.
Nevertheless, it needs to thaw so you can divide it. To avoid this problem, try dividing the ham into separate portions.
If you’re freezing Serrano ham for toast, for example, place a piece of baking parchment between each piece to make it simpler to separate them.
Cook It Before Freezing It
Cook your ham before freezing to last up to three to four months in the freezer.
Stack the Packs
Avoid stacking the portions on top of each other in the freezer. This can prevent the ham in the pile’s center from freezing as quickly as it should, decreasing the meat quality once defrosted.
Before freezing ham, place each packet in the freezer separately for the first two to three hours or until solid. Then you may stack them safely.
Cured meats are designed to be edible for an extended period. Curing has been used to preserve pork for centuries before the invention of the refrigerator or freezer.
Serrano ham can be eaten for much longer than you may expect. So, you don’t have to freeze it at all, but in case you do, follow my tips above.