Speck is a type of bacon from the South Tyrol region of Italy. Made by Recla, a well respected producer since 1919, this meat is rubbed with a mix of spices that is a well-kept family secret. Basically it is a mix of rock salt, sea salt, pickling salt, pepper, juniper berries, various herbs, and a hint of allspice. Two weeks of dry curing is the first stage in preserving the meat. The speck is then lightly cold-smoked over beechwood chips, producing its signature flavor. The individual pieces of speck are then stacked carefully for maturing in aging cellars, where the product loses about 40% of its weight in the slow drying process. This maturing is important for the bacon to become truly tender. Unlike American bacon, this type of bacon does not require any additional cooking - simply bring it to room temperature and slice it. Serve it with or without its spicy crust.