Bresaola is the ‘lean’ cured meat by definition: it is recommended in all diets and is rightly considered a friendly food to the figure and sportsmen.
Appetizing, digestible, and fresh, as it is not subjected to grinding, rolling, or seasoning, it is, therefore, a well-being-friendly cured meat. The only precaution is for hypertensive people, who should eat it with moderation as the salt concentration is harmful for those suffering from this pathology.
Greenlight for everyone else, even for those who have to pay attention to fats and cholesterol. Bresaola has a moderate content of lipids and has a low content of saturated fatty acids and cholesterol.
It is very rich in proteins with essential amino acids. It is perfect to satiate and give the right amount of energy for sports.
Iron, phosphorus, potassium, and B vitamins complete the picture of a cured meat that is worth including in your diet.
How is bresaola produced?
For the finest punta d’anca, the beef is salted and flavored with dry herbs and spices and left to rest for two weeks in brine, then cleaned and finally stuffed into casings. At that point, it moves on to drying and seasoning for a total of two months.
Typical of Valtellina, which has been produced for centuries, since 1998, it has been an internationally recognized cured meat thanks to the IGP, Protected Geographical Indication, which protects its production and peculiar processing.
It is a mountain cold cut that gives an intense and rustic flavor, but at the same time, it doesn’t weigh too much on the daily caloric balance.
There is not only bresaola made with beef, which usually comes from Charolais, limousine, or South American varieties.
In some areas of the Veneto region, there is also bresaola produced with horse meat, while in the Novara area, venison bresaola is made with the same procedure. In Valchiavenna, smoking with pine wood is added to the traditional preparation for bresaola with an even more particular taste and very intense hints of wood.
On the other hand, from the meat closest to the animal’s bone, considered of lesser value, slinzega is produced, another typical cold cut from the north of Lombardy.
What can we combine with bresaola to improve its qualities and diet?
Undoubtedly one of the preferred combinations to best enjoy the many virtues of bresaola is the one with vegetables, which add fiber, help to satiate and reactivate the metabolism.
The most suitable vegetables are green leafy ones, slightly bitter, both raw and cooked: rocket, for example, and ribs or herbs.
Of course, other vegetables are also perfect and go well with the savory and elegant taste of this cured meat: grated carrots, radishes that, with their spicy flavor, enhance every bite.
The calorie count will be meager: just 151 calories for 100g of bresaola; even with plenty of vegetables, we will hardly exceed 300 calories.
However, it is not recommended to combine it with other proteins, such as fresh and aged cheeses or eggs, which would add to it but would not complete the daily nourishment correctly, as our body needs.
For a well-being regime and diet, the ideal solution is to add vegetables, dress it with raw extra virgin olive oil, and accompany the meal with a small wholemeal sandwich.
Instead, it is better not to finish the meal with a fruit salad, but to keep this option as a healthy snack, to enjoy in between meals to improve metabolism even more: the more small meals and snacks we have during the day, the better.
Unfortunately, bresaola is to be avoided for pregnant women as it is an uncooked but only seasoned cured meat.
How important is a correct combination for the diet?
Correctly combining bresaola helps us make the most of its metabolic and slimming power: it is, therefore, the thing to pay more attention to and the one that can either make it or break it when it comes to losing weight.
In addition to not mixing protein sources (so avoid mixing cold cuts and cheese, or meat and eggs in the same meal), the same care must be taken in not taking different carbohydrate sources: no pasta and bread in the same meal, for example.
Furthermore, it is always advisable to concentrate the consumption of carbohydrates in the first part of the day, leaving the proteins, such as bresaola, for dinner. Among the other nutritional benefits, the lightness of the bresaola will be an excellent viaticum for a refreshing night.
Recipes with Bresaola
After discovering all the characteristics of taste and well-being of bresaola, let’s move on to find the recipes with this characteristic and full of virtues cured meat. Combined with vegetables and fruit, it is the protagonist of delicious dishes, effortless to make, and a sure success for your diet.
Rustic bread with avocado, bresaola, and black sesame
Ingredients for four people:
- 4 large slices of rustic bread
- Dried chilli, chopped
- Black sesame seeds
- 2 ripe avocados
- 100 gr of Bresaola
- 1 lemon
- Olive oil
- Salt and ground black pepper
- Season the slices of bread with salt, pepper, and a drizzle of oil. Roast it in a grill pan until it is golden brown
- Combine the chili pepper, black sesame seeds, a pinch of salt and pepper, and the lemon zest in a bowl. Keep aside
- Cut each avocado into four parts, then remove the stone and peel them. Slice each piece lengthwise, leaving the slices together at the top. Fan each quarter and arrange two on each slice
- Add the sesame seed mixture created earlier
- Place a slice of bresaola on each piece of bread and finish with a few drops of lemon
- Baskets of parmesan with bresaola, rocket, and pomegranate grains
Ingredients for four people:
- 60g of grated Parmesan cheese
- 35gr of rocket
- 80g of bresaola
- Pomegranate grains as required
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees
- Cut a sheet of baking paper to make four squares and place them on a baking sheet. Arrange 4 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese on top of each square and, with the help of the spoon, spread it out to make circles
- Put the pan in the oven and cook for about 3 minutes
- Once ready, insert each square, with the parmesan on top, inside aluminum cups. With the help of another cup, crush the parmesan circle to create the “basket” shape
- Let it cool for a couple of minutes, and then gently remove the basket from the cups
- Cut the bresaola and rocket into strips. Mix them in a bowl by adding salt, lemon, oil, and pomegranate seeds
- Place the bresaola mixture in the parmesan baskets and serve
Lemon risotto with rocket and bresaola
Ingredients for four people:
- 320gr of Carnaroli risotto
- 30 gr of grated Parmesan cheese
- 35g of butter
- 150gr of bresaola
- A bunch of rocket
- 1 Lemon
- Vegetable broth as required
- Salt and pepper
- In a saucepan, start by toasting the rice with a drizzle of oil but without the sautè. Add salt and gradually add the vegetable broth, stirring constantly
- Once cooked, turn off the heat and stir in the butter, Parmesan cheese, and the zest of a lemon
- Cut the bresaola into strips
- Serve the risotto and add the bresaola and rocket
Bresaola is always a good idea!
As we understand, this cured meat, so tasty and with a rich history behind it, is the perfect companion of a wellness diet. It is suitable for those attentive to the figure, who play sports, and who have decided that it is the right time to lose weight.
We can put an ally on the table when we want something tasty but light, able to make our meal healthy but satisfying.