Parma Ham Recipes for Christmas

Who hasn’t heard of Parma ham, or Prosciutto di Parma PDO? This raw, aged Italian meat can be found in delis and restaurants around the world. You have probably been offered it with a slice of melon during summer or as a topping on an Italian pizza. Its unique flavour comes from a mix of traditional know-how and unique ecological and environmental conditions, specific to the Region of Parma, Italy.

Parma Ham is a cured meat that is a much healthier option than other types of red meat, and a good substitute for bacon as it is made with no nitrates or nitrites. Parma Ham is a Protected Designation of Origin product (PDO) meaning it can only be made with in a specific area of Northern Italy.

There’s something for friends, family and even the festive party season in this selection of Parma Ham dishes, ideal to celebrate the festive season.

Christmas cod in Prosciutto di Parma with green pea puree

Photo: Mats Dreyer

2 portions


  • 300 g cod loin 
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 slices Prosciutto di Parma
  • 300 g frozen green peas
  • 1 dl cream
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 400 g almond potatoes
  • 2 tsp course-ground mustard


  • Cut the cod into two serving-size pieces. Season the cod with pepper and wrap each piece in Prosciutto di Parma.
  • Boil the peas in lightly salted water. Drain the water and add the cream and 1 tablespoon of butter. Blend the mix into a course pea puree with a hand blender. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Sear the pieces of cod in 1 tablespoon of butter until they are golden on each side. Then bake the cod in the oven at 180 °C for about 10 minutes until the pieces separate easily when you press down on them.
  • Cut the potatoes into slices that are 0.5 cm thick. Bake the slices in the frying pan you used to sear the cod until they are tender and golden. This takes about 10 minutes.
  • Serve the cod with the pea puree, the baked potato slices, and the mustard.

Christmas salad with crispy Prosciutto di Parma, figs, and clementine dressing

Photo: Mats Dreyer

2 portions


  • 4 slices Prosciutto di Parma
  • 2 clementines
  • 1 bag rocket
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 buffalo mozzarella
  • 2 fresh figs, in wedges
  • 1 red onion, in wedges
  • salt and pepper


  • Start by baking the Prosciutto di Parma – lay the slices on baking paper and bake them in the oven at 180 °C for about 10 minutes until they are golden and crispy. Let them cool on a paper towel.
  • Peel the clementines with a knife. Slice out the clementine wedges and put them in a bowl. Squeeze the juice from the remaining clementine peels over the clementine wedges. Add the olive oil to the bowl. 
  • Tear the mozzarella into large bits and plate them along with the figs, red onion wedges, and rocket. Carefully mix the clementine dressing into the salad.
  • Add the crispy Prosciutto di Parma before serving.

Smashed Brussels Sprouts with Prosciutto di Parma Crumbs

parma ham

Serves 6-8, as a side

Preparation time: 10 mins

Cooking time: 45 mins


  • 6 slices Prosciutto di Parma
  • 800g Brussels sprouts, trimmed
  • 2 small red onions, peeled
  • 150g ready cooked and peeled chestnuts, broken in half
  • 3 sprigs rosemary, leaves roughly chopped (optional)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp Balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup


Heat oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas 7. Lay the slices of Prosciutto di Parma on a large non-stick roasting tray so that they are in a single layer.

Bake for 8-10 mins, until crisp (it will crisp more as it cools), then remove from the tray and set aside on a plate. Once it has cooled, use your hands to crumble.

Bring a large pan of water to the boil and cook the sprouts for 8-10 mins. Depending on size, this will be until just soft enough to crush a little. Drain and tip the sprouts into the roasting tray, gently squashing using a potato masher.

Quarter the onions and pull apart into petals, then add them to the roasting dish along with the chestnuts and rosemary. Drizzle with the oil and season, but don’t over salt as the Prosciutto di Parma will add saltiness. Toss well and roast for 25 mins, stirring halfway, until starting to caramelise a little.

Drizzle over the balsamic and maple syrup, stir well, and roast for 5 mins more. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle over the Prosciutto di Parma crumbs.

See also: Gluten-Free Roasted Butternut Squash

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