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Dec 23, 2009 05:46 AM

Where can i buy the best prosciutto in the Mpls-St. Paul---cities or 'burbs?

I purchased prosciutto for the first time ever from Costco and it was NASTY. Now I am determined to find out if all prosciutto is nasty or if there's good stuff out there. Can anyone suggest a great place to buy this? Since I will only purchase a small quantity, I am not as concerned as I usually am about getting the best price---I just want the good stuff, price be damned!

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  1. Buon Giorno market in Lilydale if you're in the area. I haven't been up there in a while, but Cossetta's has generally been reliable for stuff like that as well. You could do worse than your local Byerly's or Kowalski's as well.

    1. You're in luck, soccermom13! Not only can you get good prosciutto here, you can get what's been called the BEST prosciutto one can buy in America, foreign or domestic. And it's made in our neighboring state of Iowa. The stuff is called La Quercia, it has won international prosciutto competitions (beating out stuff from Italy), and you can buy it at the Midtown Global Market, among other places (seems like maybe Byerly's actually has it? not sure, but I know I bought some at MGM). I got mine at a little deli at the market, can't remember its name, but I'm sure someone knows....

      There was recently an article about it at Heavy Table:

      17 Replies
      1. re: mtullius

        Buon Giorno for imported, Seward Co-op has La quercia prosciutto, guanciale and lardo right now. Killer, killer stuff.

        1. re: mtullius

          fantastic. one of the posters says that broders sells as well.

          1. re: mtullius

            Agreed about La good. I recommend their Rossa.

            1. re: jhojati

              Wow! You guys are the BEST! Thanks for the speedy and extremely helpful answers. I can easily get to any of the places you listed which carry the La Quercia products and I can hardly wait to get there. (But maybe not today---with the snow and wind, this may be a good day for staying inside :0)

              Okay---more questions for you:
              1. When I get the GOOD La Q prosciutto, what's the best way to enjoy it? Just eat a slice plain? Other? And can I eat this without cooking it?
              2. How do you use guanciale?
              3. How do you use lardo?
              4. How do you use rosso?
              5. Has anyone made a field trip to La Q in Iowa? I love making field trips to actually see these places---it's like visiting a shrine for me!

              Again, thank you so much.

              1. re: soccermom13

                1. When I get the GOOD La Q prosciutto, what's the best way to enjoy it? Just eat a slice plain? Other? And can I eat this without cooking it? Slice as thin as possible for most uses. Eat it as is. Bard a loin of rabbit or a chicken breast on the grill. Wrap and grill asparagus when asparagus is available locally. Same with melon. Delicious around a fig, grilled or fresh. Julienne thin strips and add to a pasta........
                2. How do you use guanciale? Think bacon. Leaner than bellies.
                3. How do you use lardo? Shave it thin, serve it with Parmigianno Reggiano. Piadina. Chianti.

                1. re: soccermom13

                  1. Yes! Eat without cooking. I like it on its own, alongside some good cheese, maybe some quince paste, crusty bread. Not all together, mind you. But together with a nice wine this plate is lovely way to spend an evening. You could even share with loved ones and friends, although when I was a single woman I used to make this for myself with some frequency.
                  You can cook prosciutto- I make a wonderful pasta dish with cream, peas & prosciutto, but I would save La Q for eating without cooking.

                  2. I recently had guanicale in a pasta carbonara dish at Craftsman that was very yummy & rich. You should probably go have a dish there. You know, for "research purposes" - enjoy

                  1. re: turtlebella

                    even a half order is worth the trip. lots of guanicale (house-made)

                  2. re: soccermom13

                    When I think of Guanciale, I think of this dish...
                    . Named for the tiny town of Amatrice, located 100 miles east of Lazio from Abruzzo this dish can be made both with or without tomatoes. Ever since Abbruzzese shepherds begin the tradition of eating this spicy pasta after a day in the chilly mountain air, the cooking process has always begun with the rich smell of a fatty piece of pork bubbling in the pan. This recipe comes from Babbo (one of Mario Batali's restaurant), they use their homemade guanciale, or cured pig jowls, with its distinct pork flavor, to achieve the same rich taste that comforted the shepherds of old.


                    Serves 4

                    ¾ pound guanciale, or pancetta, thinly sliced
                    3 garlic cloves
                    1 red onion, halved and sliced ½-inch thick
                    1 ½ teaspoons hot red pepper flakes
                    Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
                    1 ½ cups basic tomato sauce
                    1 pound bucatini
                    1 bunch of flat-leaf parsley, leaves only
                    Pecorino Romano, for grating

                    1. Being 6 quarts of water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons of salt.

                    2. Place the guanciale slices in a 12- to 14-inch sauté pan in a single layer and cook over medium-low heat until most of the fat has been rendered from the meat, turning occasionally. Remove the meat to a plate lined with paper towels and discard half the fat, leaving enough to coat the garlic, onion and red pepper flakes. Return the guanciale to the pan with the vegetables, and cook over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, or until the onions, garlic and guanciale are light golden brown. Season with salt and pepper, add the tomato sauce, reduce the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes.

                    3. Cook the bucatini in the boiling water according to the package directions, until al dente. Drain the pasta and add it to the simmering sauce. Add the parsley leaves, increase the heat to high and toss to coat. Divide the pasta among four warmed pasta bowls. Top with freshly grated Pecorino cheese and serve immediately.

                    1. re: cuococattivo

                      do you know where to buy bucatini in the twin cities?

                      1. re: carolita

                        I just saw saw it at Cosetta's last week. I know last year I looked for it at Lund's and Jerry's and it was not available. It is also sometimes called perciatelli.

                        1. re: carolita

                          Try Cossetta's in St. Paul.......let me know!

                          1. re: carolita

                            Yesterday, to my suprise...I found bucatini at..........CUB's packaged as their "Culinary Circle" brand....I have not tried it yet.....waiting to pick up some La Quercia guanciale (lol)........yes, I said CUB foods...

                            1. re: cuococattivo

                              thanks for the info on the bucatini. i saw it at cossettas yesterday, but at nearly $10 for a pkg,, i passed on it. later i was at the roseville cub, and voila, there was the bucatini by culinary circle ($1.59) yes, a m a z i n g.. had you not told me about it, i would have missed it, so many thanks. haven't tried it yet, but will soon.

                    2. re: mtullius

                      I know that Lund's in Highland Park sells it (La Quercia). Agreed that it is quite delicious. (Meant as a response to mtullius)

                      1. re: BigSal

                        Thanks for this terrific info! And that was a great article at Heavy Table, Mtullius! Also, I found some appealing recipes at the a Quercia site.

                        1. re: soccermom13

                          Kowalski's and Byerly's carries La Quercias Prosciutto Americana in 3 oz packs. Surdy's carries the Green label which is organic, acorn fed pigs that get massages daily.

                        2. re: BigSal

                          La Quercia is also sold at the Local D'Lish in the North Loop on 1st Street North

                      2. I know this is an old thread but Costco carries La Quercia now. Has to be the deal of the century.

                        7 Replies
                            1. re: getgot211

                              $9 for 9 ounces. I usually see it for $7 for 3 ounces so this is a great deal.

                            2. re: kriminalrat

                              Which Costco? Sometimes the stock varies from store to store. And thanks for this great bit of info!

                                1. re: kriminalrat

                                  Hey Kriminalrat,
                                  Thanks for this info. "My" Costco is the one in Maplewood. If I can't find it there, I'll pack a lunch for the journey and make the trip to EP ;0)

                                  1. re: soccermom13

                                    St. Louis Park Costco has it too. They also carry La Quercia's pancetta.

                            3. Whenever I'm at the airport I eat a prosciutto and pecorino sandwich at Surdyk's Flights. It is outstanding. Not sure who makes it or if you can get it at the main location in Nordeast.

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