|'Ndjua from Spilinga at Terra Madre|
'Ndjua is an odd thing. I've spoken to many people who mostly fall into one of two camps: they have either A) never heard of the stuff or B) they are completely infatuated with it. Is it better to have loved and lost that never to have loved at all? Regardless of your situation, neither is the ideal because, while the fullness of flavour it imparts to dishes makes it a 'must try' in my opinion, the fact remains that 'ndjua IS notoriously difficult to find. I've read about it being smuggled in carry on luggage, but I believe, vacuum packed (or in a jar), it's a fine souvenir to bring back to Canada, no worries.
So, say you 'know a guy', have access to 'ndjua (contraband or otherwise) or you are making your own and are wondering what to do with it. To this end, I had the opportunity to speak to some excellent producers from the undisputed home of 'ndjua, Spilinga in Vibo Valentia, while at Terra Madre.
I was pretty thrilled to get some insider tips on the pork product du jour. Here are some favourites, courtesy of L'Artigiano della 'ndjua:
Ziti or penne sauteed with melanzane e 'ndjua.
Squid salad with potatoes and 'ndjua
Scrambled eggs with 'ndjua
Recipes to follow.