More similar to a wild boar, rather than to a common pig, this country pig has a dark coat and a real "belt" of pinkish color that surrounds its chest, withers, and front legs. The Cinta Senese is the ancestor of the Tuscan pig breeds. Much less prolific than conventional pigs, the Cinta Senese has been close to extinction in the 70s and 90s. Luckily, today we see a positive trend, due to the mating with the common pigs named “Large White”: the recovery of the pure-bred Cinta Senese is a recent topic of discussion, thanks to the work of passionate breeders.
Clearings alternating with woods are its ideal habitat, where it feeds on acorns, tubers, roots and organic material of turfed fields. Such natural diet gives unique characteristics: a redder colour, a tastier flavor, a more intense flavor, and a higher concentration of unsaturated fatty acids, such as Omega 3 and Omega 6, with respect to common pig meat.
If you are among those who take the ham fat away, the Cinta Senese will force you to make an exception. In fact, its lard is richer in oleic acid, a substance also contained in olive oil, which helps to keep away the cholesterol and prevents cardiovascular diseases; also, its consistence is much smoother, more pleasant on your palate, so you almost do not succeed in distinguishing the fat from the lean.