Chouriço azedo de Vinhais
‘Chouriço Azedo de Vinhais’ aka ‘Azedo de Vinhais’ or ‘Chouriço de Pão de Vinhais’ is a smoked IGP sausage from Portugal. It is made from the meat and fat of pigs of the Bisaro breed or of cross-breeds that must be 50 % Bisaro (F1 animals, produced by cross-breeding pure-bred Bisaro pigs registered in the herdbook with pigs of other breeds), regional wheat bread and olive oil from Trás-os-Montes (these being essential for giving the product a specific taste and texture), stuffed into a pig's large intestine. One end of the intestine is tied or sewn up and then twisted, one or two more knots are then made and, when the intestine has been stuffed, the other end is tied with cotton thread. The sausage is a straight, cylindrical shape with an average length of 20 to 25 cm, 7 to 10 cm in diameter and yellow-brown in colour. The inside is also yellow brown in colour and it appears homogeneous when cut. The final weight is approximately 300 g.
Owing to the traditional production method, the sources of animal nutrition used, the local population's traditional know-how in terms of animal husbandry, and the pedological conditions needed to develop the food base used to obtain raw ingredients of an undeniably distinctive quality, the area in which the Bisaro pigs and cross-breeds used in the production of Chouriço Azedo de Vinhais are born, reared, fattened, slaughtered and cut up is confined to the municipalities of Alfândega da Fé, Bragança, Carrazeda de Anciães, Freixo de Espada à Cinta, Macedo de Cavaleiros, Miranda do Douro, Mirandela, Mogadouro, Torre de Moncorvo, Vila Flor, Vimioso and Vinhais in the Bragança district and to the municipalities of Alijó, Boticas, Chaves, Mesão Frio, Mondim de Basto, Montalegre, Murça, Régua, Ribeira de Pena, Sabrosa, Santa Marta de Penaguião, Valpaços, Vila Pouca de Aguiar and Vila Real in the Vila Real district, since only this area has the required food base and animal husbandry skills required. Given the particular weather conditions required to produce Chouriço Azedo de Vinhais the people's know-how and the constant and unchanging local methods employed, the geographical processing area is confined to the municipalities of Alfândega da Fé, Bragança, Carrazeda de Anciães, Freixo de Espada à Cinta, Macedo de Cavaleiros, Miranda do Douro, Mirandela, Mogadouro, Torre de Moncorvo, Vila Flor, Vimioso and Vinhais in the Bragança district.
Method of production
The pigmeat (lean meat, head, flank and belly) is cut into medium-sized pieces, cooked in salted water and stripped while it is still hot. The bread is cut into thin slices with the crust left on and then softened in the meat stock. The seasoning, strips of meat, olive oil, paprika and garlic are added to this mixture. Once the seasoning is right, the mixture is immediately stuffed into a pig's intestine and then smoked slowly — traditionally for more than four weeks — using regional firewood (oak and/or chestnut). Owing to its characteristics Chouriço Azedo de Vinhais is placed on the market as a whole sausage and is always pre-packed at the place of origin. Special material is used for its packaging, which, when it comes into contact with the product, is innocuous and inert in a normal or controlled atmosphere or in a vacuum. Packing may be carried out only in the geographical processing area so as to ensure traceability and control and to prevent any change to the product's taste. Once the seasoning is right, the mixture is immediately stuffed into the pig intestine and then smoked slowly using regional firewood (oak and/or chestnut), usually for more than four weeks. Due to its characteristics, Chouriço Azedo de Vinhais is placed on the market as a whole sausage but is always pre-packed at the place of origin.
Link to the area
Various zoomorphic sculptures and references made to taxes on pigs and their by products in different municipal registers in the region prove that pig-breeding has been important in this area for a very long time. The relationship between the product and the geographical area stems from the (indigenous) breed of animal, the local sources of nutrition used, the know-how in terms of selection of the cuts of meat, slow smoking using regional firewood and a curing process that takes place in very cold and dry locations in the region.
Reference: The European Commission