Also known as coppa, capocollo, cappacuolo or gabagool, capicola is a traditional Italian cold cut made from a large cut of pork meat that starts at the solid muscle between the head (capo) and includes the fourth or fifth rib of the pork shoulder (collo), or neck and shoulder region. A popular Corsican pork salami, coppa meat is dry cured and sliced very thin, making it ideal for sandwiches, pasta, and antipasti platters.
The secret to its tender, savory flavor is a combination of herbs and spices, including garlic, paprika, and red or white wine. After being salted and seasoned, the capicola meat is stuffed into a natural casing and hung for four to six months for curing. Coppa meat is especially loved for its mellow flavor and melt-in-your-mouth texture.
Is Italian capicola the same as prosciutto?
While these two Italian masterpieces are both cured meats, they are not the same thing. Prosciutto is made from the hind leg of a pig, while capicola is made from the shoulder or neck. Prosciutto is usually thinly sliced and served raw, while coppa can be sliced thin or thick and can also be cooked.
What does capicola taste like?
Coppa has a rich, savory flavor that is often described as slightly sweet and spicy. It has a tender, melt-in-your-mouth texture and a marbled appearance that makes it visually appealing as well.
Is capicola the same as salami?
While coppa and salami are both cured meats, they are not the same thing. Salami is typically made from ground meat, while coppa is made from whole pieces of meat. Salami is also usually seasoned with a wider range of spices than capicola.
Are you supposed to cook capicola?
This Italian delicacy can be eaten cooked or uncooked, depending on personal preference and how it is being used. It is often used as a sandwich meat, either sliced thin and layered on bread or heated and served as a hot sandwich. Capicola can also be used as a pizza topping or incorporated into pasta dishes.
Why is capicola called Gabagool?
Coppa is sometimes called "Gabagool" in Italian-American slang. The term is a corruption of the original Italian word "capicollo," which is pronounced "cah-pee-col-lo." Over time, the word became Anglicized and eventually morphed into "Gabagool." The term has become a popular meme in recent years, with many people using it to poke fun at Italian-American stereotypes.
One of the most famous Italian cured meats, "gabagool" was featured prominently on the HBO Series the Sopranos. Tony Soprano can be often seen eating this Italian delicacy.
How to Eat Capicola?
Coppa is an essential ingredient in the famous Muffalletta sandwich from New Orleans. For a classic Italian capicola sandwich, try combining coppa ham slices, basil leaves, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. This gourmet cold cut also makes an excellent addition to a charcuterie board and antipasto platters, along with the classic favorites like prosciutto and soppressata. Add your favorite Italian cheeses, fresh fruit, and honey and season with red pepper and black pepper.