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Chorizo Zamorano

I love Spanish sausage (chorizo). Fresh, dried, semi dried, I don’t think I’ve ever met a chorizo I didn’t like. Today we are making a Spanish Dry Cured Salami from the Province of Zamora. It’s called Chorizo Zamorano.

This is such a great salami not only because it’s absolutely delicious but it’s easy to make and dries very fast (great for those of you with little patience). The reason it dries so fast is because of the sheep casing that we use. This small diameter casing allows our salami to dry lightning fast which is why we will be using Insta Cure #1 in this recipe.

This salami gets it’s awesome flavor from the specific paprika that are used. Pimenton de la Vera. This smoky paprika has a sweet variety and a spicy variety. We will be using both. In addition to the paprika we will also be using dextrose. Dextrose is the simple sugar that we use to feed our starter culture, Flavor of Italy. Flavor of Italy adds beneficial bacteria to our pork meat. During the fermentation stage this culture will begin to consume the dextrose added and release lactic acid. This process lowers the pH of our meat creating an environment that’s inhospitable to bad bacteria. Our target for this salami will be a pH of 4.9 – 5.2.

The absolute most reliable way to test the pH of your salami is with a pH meter. If you plan on getting into this hobby you’ll want to get a pH meter. This isn’t something that you want to go cheap on. A good quality pH meter will last you a long time and offer you the peace of mind of knowing that you are producing a safe product to eat. We use the pH meter from Apera Instruments PH60S-Z. This Pocket pH Tester has blue tooth capability, can be calibrated for extreme accuracy, and is very easy to use. They also make a (non bluetooth version) PH60S. The great thing about pH meters is that you can use them for all sorts of things other than salami making. We use ours to make beer/wine, cheese, fermented foods (kim chi, sauerkraut, hot sauce), kombucha, and gardening/hydroponics. There are many different styles of pH meters but if you stick to the ones that I linked above (the swiss spear units) you can do everything i mentioned without a problem.

The last thing you need in order to make salami is a place for it to dry. The absolute best option for most people is to have a drying chamber. This chamber provides a controlled environment so that your salami can dry evenly.  Building a drying chamber is relatively easy but if you don’t want to build one and have some rainy day money laying around buying a drying/curing chamber is even easier.

Follow basic salami preparation practices when making this sausage.
  1. Clean and Sanitize all of your equipment.
  2. Keep your meat and grinder parts super cold (below 35F) during the grinding process
  3. Rehydrate your starter culture (in non-chlorinated water) for 30 minutes prior to use.
  4. Mix your very chilled mince meat, seasonings, and starter culture till the mince becomes very tacky
  5. Tightly stuff the mince into casings and prick out any air pockets
  6. Record the starting weight and the target of each salami link
  7. Brush with protective mold culture
  8. Hang the salami to ferment for 24-72 hours (depending on the starter culture)
  9. After the pH target has been hit, hang the salami in a drying chamber till the weight loss target has been achieved.
  10. Remove from the drying chamber, slice thinly, and enjoy

Here are a few things you might find useful when making this sausage

Enjoy the video and the recipe. If you have any questions feel free to ask away. If you make this at home I’d love to hear about how it came out!!

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5 from 6 votes

Chorizo Zamorano

Prep Time2 hours
Drying Time21 days
How much do you want to make? 1000 grams



  • Clean your meat of any silver skin, sinew, arteries and cut into small chunks. Cut the pork back fat into small cubes Place meat and fat in the freezer to chill till the temperature reaches mid 30's.
  • Grind your very chilled meat and fat together on a 6mm plate.
  • Mix the seasonings and starter culture with your ground meat and fat till your mince is tacky
  • Stuff your mince meat into the sheep casings, link, and prick out any air pockets. Weigh your chorizo and record the weight. Brush with Mold 600

Fermenting and drying instructions

  • To ferment your sausage hang at room temperature (75F-85F) for 24 hours (if you have a way to test the pH you are aiming for anything between 4.9 and 5.2)
  • after fermentation place the meat in a drying chamber where the temperature is 55F and the humidity is 80%. Here it will stay till it looses 40% of its weight.
  • After you hit your weight loss target your chorizo is ready to enjoy.

This recipe is an adaptation from

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21 thoughts on “Chorizo Zamorano”

  1. Hello Eric
    What can I do if i can’t get meat starter and mold cultur. I can not order them online because they need to be transferred at 20 degree c.
    Thanks Amnon.

    1. Hello Amnon. These cultures can withstand 7-10 days outside of refrigeration. When I order mine they normally take 10 days to get to me and they are perfectly fine to use.. If you can’t get starter cultures you’ll have to resort to natural fermenting techniques. Sauerkraut juice, fresh garlic, things that contain natural lactic acid producing bacteria…

  2. 5 stars
    I am one of those sausage-makers with little patience! LOL Made a 5lb batch which is now still fermenting (I used T-SPX instead of Taste of Italy…it’s what I had on hand) at 68*F for 72 hours….stuffed into hog-casings and sprayed with Bactoferm 600 mold….Looking forward to moving onto drying stage….Will keep you posted on final results! Thanks once again for a great recipe!

      1. 5 stars
        December 26th and I cut into the first salami…OUTSTANDING! By far, the best salami I’ve every made! Great recipe Eric…HIGHLY recommended! Thanks again for a great journey into salami making…will be making these with frequency in the future….

  3. Hello Eric,

    I see in your video you do not use mold600, but in your recipe you say to apply it. Would you recommend using it or not with these smaller casings/dry time. And if you use it, should I peel off the casing. Thanks!


    1. Hey will. For these casings it’ up to you. I didn’t apply because I knew that my chamber was full of mold and it would naturally spread to this salami. If you choose to not apply mold you might have to brush it down with vinegar after the first few weeks. You could remove the casing or leave it on as both the mold and the casing are edible.

    1. Sure. It’ll be very salty but you can use that. If you do use that you’ll have to adjust the salt amount in your recipe. Keep the cure the same though..

  4. 5 stars
    Eric…as a rule of thumb, I use Instacure #1 for projects that usually take less than a month to complete. Salamis (whole muscle projects) that take 30+ days usually get Instacure #2. My understanding for doing this is that nitrate will ‘give birth’ to nitrite after the 30 day mark, or thereabouts. My question is this (and I can’t seem to find an answer): I usually use T-SPX and ferment for 72 hours at around 68*F. This is for slow fermenting/drying salamis that take more than 30 days. Can I use T-SPX with Instacure #1 for shorter drying-time projects such as your Strolghino or Zamorano salamis (provided I use the fermenting directions for T-SPX)? Most of the less than 30 day projects seem to use Bactoferm FLC and I’m wondering if I’m doing something wrong (dangerous?) by using T-SPX. T-SPX is my ‘go-to’ culture and hopefully I’m applying it correctly. Thanks as always, in advance…..

      1. Sigh of relief! LOL For some reason, I believe I read somewhere (The Art of Making Fermented Sausages, Stanley Marianski??) that Instacure #1 should not be used with T-SPX and most of the recipes show F-LC as the prescribed bacterial culture when making short term projects. Now I feel more comfortable! Thanks as always for your professional and much appreciated response!

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