Authentic Calabrian Salami: SMAF Ltd selection


We proudly present our line of Authentic Calabrian Cold Cuts: SMAF Ltd selection.


SMAF LTD deals with all the sausages and salami labelled in Calabrian DOPs. However, among the sausages, stand out the Calabrian “soppressata”, seasoned salami (capocollo and hard sausage) and the famous “Nduja” (sophisticated spicy and spreadable salami).

The first item, SOPPRESSATA is an Italian dry salami. Soppressata is sometimes prepared using ham, but it never happens in Calabria.

Even if there are many variations, two principal types are made: a cured dry sausage typical of Basilicata, Apulia, and Calabria, and a very different uncured salame, made in Tuscany and Liguria.

In Calabria, and generally in the south of Italy, this salami is part of southern Italian cultural heritage, much more than in the north.

“Soppressata di Calabria” enjoys Protected designation of origin status, as in esample that one produced in Acri and Decollatura, highly renowned.

Secondly, CAPOCOLLO is a traditional Calabrian and, generally, Italian pork cold cut, made from the dry-cured muscle running from the neck to the 4th or 5th rib of the pork shoulder or neck, sometimes smoked or conserved in olive oil or flavored with cooked wine.

Given that it is a whole muscle salume, its preparation seems similar to the more widely known cured ham or prosciutto. Both are pork-derived cold-cuts and typically sliced very thin.

We can count, in Italy, two particular varieties, Coppa Piacentina and Capocollo di Calabria. We deal with the second, which has Protected Designation of Origin (P.D.O.) status, under the Common Agricultural Policy of European Union law, which ensures that only products genuinely originating in those regions are allowed in commerce as such.

Other versions, not covered by mentioned PDO status, are simply designated as “Prodotto agroalimentare tradizionale” (P.A.T.) by the Italian Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies. It is the case of Capocollo del Lazio, Capocollo tipico senese (called finocchiata or finocchiona), Capocollo della Basilicata and Capocollo dell’Umbria.

In any case, our well known product is ‘NDUJA.

Generally, outside Calabria, is a special, spicy, spreadable pork salumi, made with shoulder and belly, ripe, roasted peppers and a mixture of spices. Our Calabrian variation derives from French andouille and is made using meat from the head, trimmings, fatback, and roasted hot red peppers.

The fiery taste of ‘Nduja is typical of the small town of Spilinga, where it was developed in the actual taste.

It is served with slices of bread or with ripe cheese and has a unique taste, suitable for a variety of dishes. Bright red in colour with a fiery taste, our ‘Nduja is delicious on a pizza or alongside medium seasoned cheeses. It also gives an incredible flavor, when you add it to lightly fried onions celery and carrot, as the basis of a tomato sauce for pasta, or just on its own with the addition of a little of the pasta water.

OTOH, we have a wide variety of other CALABRESE SALAMI. All our regional coarsely ground pork salamis are mildly hot, due to a generous addition of red pepper flakes– perfect for sandwiches and antipasto.

They are pressed into a flat shape during curing. This pressing not only gives Calabrese its characteristic shape, it also gives it a wonderfully firm texture. This coursely ground meat is perfect for sandwiches or in an antipasto. Serve with crackers for a game day appetizer as well.

Other example of calabrese Salami is “Cervellata Calabrese”, a Pork Salami or Sausage flavored with white wine and hot peppers. Another is “Pancetta di Calabria DOP”, a Pork Salami, part of many Italian recipes and widely used in the preparation of fried. It can also be consumed raw or barely heated, sliced thin, more or less, along with salt bread, baked in a wood, a typical local tradition. Another one “Salsiccia di Calabria DOP”, a Pork Salami, which, according to an ancient recipe, is made with giblets and fatty parts of pork mixed with hot peppers, bagged, then smoked at first and then cured.

All these salami from Calabria dates to the period of Greek colonization of the Ionian coast and the cultural glories of Ancient Greece. Historical records describe processing of pork from the seventeenth century.


SMAF Associates LTD operates in Calabrian’s original salami sector as a broker – national and international “Broker”. Our activity towards the original Calabrian sausages starts from a long experience in the agricultural products market, in the activities of buying, selling, import-export, logistics, sea-to-land transport, insurance and customs issues.

Our brokerage deals with import-export to USA, Canada, Europe and Eastern countries, from Calabria, Italy, for quality fruit and vegetables of the best brands. We give the right importance to the original Calabrian quality sausages by taking care of their transport directly from the manufacturer. We guarantee our business partners the utmost seriousness and we have clients of great international prestige. Among the other brokerage countries: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Chile, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Hungary, USA and Vietnam.

Our company is leader in the distribution of Calabrian original salami.

The presence of liaison offices in Calabria ensures us a strategic position for the supply and distribution of goods. We are the privileged interlocutor for the Commercial and Collective Catering World and all the business forms that need a high level of service as well as a constant and customized quality standard.

Figs of India (Prickly Pears) in Calabria


So called prickly pears or “Figs of India” (fiku d’innia in local dialect), Imported since ancient times in Calabria ,  are the only fruits not treated with any kind of chemical additives, because they grow spontaneously and in abundance in the warmest areas.

This fruit with purifying and refreshing effects, typically maturing in summer, appears to be among the most purchased in Calabria in the period from May to September.


It is impossible to cross Calabria and not to notice the numerous plants of prickly pears, present above all in stony places, an integral part of the South Italian landscape. They stand out with their intense green color enlivened by the red, yellow and orange of the fruits, so characteristic as to constitute an aspect of the Calabrian territory, and in a particular way in the areas of Tropea and its neighboring countries.

A Typical Calabrian Landscape

Prickly pears (in Botanic latin: opuntia ficus indica) belong to the Cactaceae family, they arrived in Italy after a very long journey. Native to South America, this plant lives luxuriantly in the Cordillera of the Andes and in the Mexican greenhouses. The plant made her first appearance in Europe thanks to Christopher Columbus who would take prickly pears to Spain. Some historical sources instead declare that it would have been the Saracens to introduce the figs of India in Italy when, in 827, they landed in Mazara, in Sicily.


On the other hand, the plant is very pleasant to see. Both from an aesthetic and a botanical point of view, this plant has fleshy leaves full of thorns, which overlap thus generating a shrub.

A plenty of colors

Its flowers are yellow and the ovoid-shaped fruits grow on top of spiny large “blades” (some large fleshy leaves). Their pulp, juicy and rich in vitamins, contains numerous woody seeds.


As said before, the prickly pear has an important peculiarity: it does not require chemical interventions to develop and is therefore one of the very rare varieties of fruit that is not tampered with by man.

Juicy and Vitaminic

It is therefore a product recommended for our tables and for the Mediterranean diet, in which it enters fully for its quantity of vitamins and water.


Prickly pears have many beneficial properties and have a purifying function also in the liver, therefore they are recommended in cases of kidney stones as they favor diuresis. Taken in the right quantities they have a laxative effect even if the woody seeds contained in the pulp can cause constipation. In addition, the large fleshy leaves of the plant are used to treat various diseases such as angina, tonsillitis, coughs, fevers, suppurations and abscesses.


Harvesting of prickly pears requires a technique that is still not mechanized as today the characteristic “coppo” is used, a sort of cone-shaped container on the tip of a stick, employed in order to avoid the annoying and very numerous and light thorns.


Cropalati, the city of the prickly pear, in Calabria (it deserves a so called DOP mark of quality, as already exists in San Cono in Sicily, where it is grown for export). Here the figs are harvested in the period from July to August, the plantation here as in Calabria is native to Mexico, derives from the opuntia ficus-indica, a succulent plant of the Cactaceae family, naturalized for centuries in Calabria and Sicily. It came after the discovery of Christopher Columbus, from what were thought to be the Indies and were instead the new American continent.

Cropalati, the village

Among the Aztecs, the prickly pear was considered a sacred plant with strong symbolic values ​​due above all to the colors of the fruits, reminiscent of those of the leopard, and economic-commercial, as the precious carmine color was extracted from them. The plant presumably arrived in Europe around 1493. With its characteristic branches with flattened and thorny blades, colorful flowers and succulent fruits with a thorny shell, it was a great discovery. In the year of the return to Lisbon of the expedition of Christopher Columbus, it appeared for the very first time in Europe and it found the ideal microclimate in the areas overlooking the sea, spreading thanks to the birds that spread the seeds, thus becoming an integral part of the landscape and culture of many Mediterranean countries.

The figs are an excellent supplement, they have digestive properties and act as a psychic balancer, promoting the growth of hair and nails. In fact, the figs help intestinal functions, make assimilate less fat and sugar, increase the sense of satiety, promote diuresis, reduce the risk of kidney disease and  have strong antioxidant properties. Therefore, in Cropalati in the prickly pears everything is used: from the peel, which was preserved in brine, to the flowers, eaten raw in salads or to prepare a decoction against kidney diseases, to the blades that are they cooked like normal vegetables.

The most common are the very sweet yellows (sulfarini) and the whites (muscaredda), the rarest and sweeter reds (sanguigne). The largest, called in some areas and in Sicily bastarduni, are the most durable and arise from the second flowering.


Prickly Pear Jam

Perfect to spread on bread as a snack or for breakfast, it will also be perfect for making various types of cakes and pies.


• 1 kg of prickly pears

• 400 g of sugar

• juice of 1 lemon


The first thing you need to do to bring a delicious prickly pear jam to the table is, obviously, clean the fruits thoroughly to remove the annoying thorns on the outside. This is a simple procedure but must be carried out with extreme caution.

First, try not to touch them with your bare hands to prevent the smallest thorns often invisible to the naked eye from hurting you. Put the prickly pears in a colander and rinse them with plenty of cold water. So keep them to soak for an hour to soften the larger thorns.

Prickly pears Jam

Now, using a fork and knife, clean the prickly pears. Insert the fork in the center of the prickly pear and first remove the two ends with the knife. Then make a vertical cut in the center and lift the edges with the knife. In this way you will gradually remove the peel and the ugly will appear in all its goodness.

At this point, the prickly pears will be reduced into small cubes and added to a large pot where you will have to cook them for about 20 minutes or until they are very soft. at this point pass them with a classic vegetable mill. In this way, in fact, you will eliminate the seeds present inside, which can be particularly annoying.

Now put the juice and pulp obtained back into the pot together with the sugar and lemon juice and continue cooking for about 40-45 minutes or until your jam has started to thicken and has therefore reached the right consistency…

So you just have to sterilize the jars in such a way as to allow proper preservation of your jam. Then boil both the jars and the caps in a pot for about 30 minutes. Let it cool and add the jam inside when it is still hot.

Cover immediately with the lid and let them cool upside down. At this point you just have to put in the pantry, in a cool place away from sources of light to rest.

If you want, you can also prepare this preserve without adding sugar but sweetening it naturally with honey or using other sweeteners.

Another very tasty variant is the prickly pear jam with the addition of cinnamon. Cinnamon will be perfect to give a spicier flavor note to your prickly pear jam. Alternatively, grated ginger will also be excellent. If, on the other hand, you want to enrich the flavor you can also use apples, which will give an even more particular taste.

Finally, the jam can be kept for several months if stored in a dark place away from heat sources. Once the jar is opened, however, it should be kept for a maximum of one week in the refrigerator.

Prickly pears ice cream

Other Recipes

In practice, prickly pears are also used to cook tasty fried peppers, which they flavor.

The fruit can be dried or baked (very energetic in this case). A well-known Calabrian distillery in Limbadi also produces a distilled liqueur, known as “Indianello“.

Other very popular culinary preparations are the prickly pear ice cream, the prickly pear peels with red onion and mulled wine, the prickly pear tart, the prickly pear syrup, the fig peel fritters of India, Risotto with prickly pears and Mustard with prickly pears.