When I visited Cwm Farm Charcuterie during a recent press trip to south-west Wales with Food and Drink Wales, I fell in love with their range of nduja sausage, salami and chorizo. I’d previously tasted the laverbread salami at a food fair at the National Botanic Garden of Wales, and I liked it so much that I bought some to take home with me, so I was excited to taste the rest of Cwm Farm’s range. When I was given some nduja sausage and chorizo to enjoy at home, I immediately began thinking about all the delicious dishes I could create with it.
The story behind Cwm Farm Charcuterie
When husband-and-wife team, Ruth and Andrew Davies bought Pontardawe-based Cwm Farm in 2010, they originally made their own pork sausages, before going on to sell meat from their Saddleback and Gloucestershire Old Spot Pigs (the latter of which have now been replaced by Large Blacks). After enjoying tremendous success, they purchased their affectionately named catering trailer, Poacher’s Pantry and sold bacon and sausages on the A4067 nearby.
Two years and a string of awards later, Ruth was determined to grow the business further. She travelled to a farm in Denmark that kept over 50,000 pigs and produced its own salami and cured meats – something she’d always been keen to do herself. Over the 18 months that followed, she undertook butchery training, developed her technical expertise and arranged for her products to be developed at Food Centre Wales in Horeb. This led to the production of three varieties of flavoured salami – Welsh laverbread (the best seller to this day), traditional paprika and Moroccan spice.
At this point, Ruth and Andrew were faced with the dilemma of deciding where to produce their salami, and how to fund it. Eventually, in 2015, they bought a garage and Andrew kitted it out with all the necessary equipment to create the purpose-built production unit that is today home to Salami HQ, complete with drying chambers shipped directly from Italy.
A year later, Ruth travelled to Tuscany and learnt how to produce spreadable nduja to add to the range, and more recently, she paid a second visit to the region, where she got the inspiration for her rosemary-infused nduja, which tastes delicious cooked with mushrooms.
Nduja sausage, salami & chorizo range
Today, Cwm Farm Charcuterie offers a selection of chorizos, salamis and nduja including traditional options like traditional paprika chorizo, alongside more unusual creations infused with ingredients like Welsh laverbread, leek, black garlic, fennel and port.
The laverbread salami is extremely moreish, but the nduja sausage was my favourite of all. It has a rich, meaty flavour and a subtle spicy kick, with a soft, smooth texture that makes it perfect for spreading onto fresh crusty bread.
Not only does Cwm Farm’s charcuterie taste mouthwateringly good, it’s also environmentally friendly. After being dry-cured for 8 – 12 weeks, the finished charcuterie is wrapped in brown greaseproof paper to keep it fresh and allow it to ‘breathe’, and Ruth and Andrew recently began trialling a new way of preserving salami by dipping it in local beeswax.
How to eat nduja sausage
I can think of endless ways to enjoy nduja. At the simple end of the scale, I loved spreading it onto hot toast and cutting it into soldiers to dunk into runny boiled eggs for breakfast. However, I also enjoyed experimenting with some more creative concoctions.
Craving comfort food on a lazy Saturday evening, with a fuzzy head from celebrating my birthday the night before, I daydreamed about what the nduja sausage would taste like as a substitute for corned beef or chorizo in a traditional hash. Getting carried away with myself, I remembered how much I love the salami crackling from Fresh – one of Cardiff ’s best sandwich/salad bars – and I knew some chorizo crackling would be the perfect topping for my nduja sausage hash, along with an obligatory fried egg with a runny, deep yellow yolk.
While corned beef and chorizo hash is usually served with diced potato that’s been boiled, fried and sometimes finished off in the oven for extra crispiness, my nduja hash actually uses mash/ed potato. This is partly because this is how my mother likes to make her corned beef hash, and also because it works well with the consistency of the nduja. Don’t be afraid to experiment with diced vs. mashed potato – I’m sure it probably tastes great either way, it’s just a matter of personal preference. Perhaps I should call it nduja sausage mash, rather than hash – what do you think?
Drooling yet? Find my recipe for nduja sausage hash with chorizo crackling below.
Nduja Sausage Hash with Chorizo Crackling
In a twist on the classic corned beef or chorizo hash, my recipe uses Cwm Farm Charcuterie's nduja sausage to give this traditional dish a fiery kick, finished with chorizo crackling for extra oomph. Enjoy!
- 100 g Cwm Farm Charcuterie nduja
- 100 g Cwm Farm Charcuterie paprika chorizo
- 500 g Maris Piper potatoes
- 1 medium white onion
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 large carrots
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 large free-range eggs
- pinch Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Peel and chop the potatoes, bring a large pan of water to the boil and boil them for around 15-20 minutes, until tender. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, finely chop the onion, garlic and carrot, and shallow fry in olive oil until soft and golden. Drain and set aside.
Mash the potatoes with the butter and a pinch of salt and pepper, and then stir in the onions, garlic and carrots, mixing well to combine.
Add the nduja to the mash and stir until evenly distributed.
Crack the eggs into the pan and cook them until the whites are set, but the yolks remain runny.
Cut the chorizo into 0.5cm-thick slices, heat the olive oil and fry the chorizo over a medium heat for 2-3 minutes per side, until crispy. You could also cook the chorizo in the oven until crispy, but I like frying it so that I can use the oil to cook the eggs - it definitely adds flavour!
Remove the chorizo from the pan and place onto kitchen towel to allow the excess oil to drain off.
Crack the eggs into the pan and cook them until the white is just set, but the yolk remains runny.
To serve, place the nduja hash onto the plate, top it with a fried egg and sprinkle the chorizo crackling on top.
For a real treat, use a duck egg in place of a chicken egg for a bigger, tastier yolk.
For extra flavour, sprinkle freshly chopped parsley over the finished dish.
How do you like to eat chorizo and/or nduja? Do you have any treasured recipes you’d like to share with other readers? Feel free to leave a comment below.