Well I can tell you, in brief it is where sausagemeat and fat are mixed together with seasonings of your choice and stuffed into large animal casings, where they are then hung and left to ferment and air-dry for several weeks or even months.
Usually a rule of thumb would be; leave your salami air-drying until it has lost between 30 and 40% of it's original weight.
To achieve the best and safest results, it is wise today to add a culture to your mix, this helps the salami start the fermentation process. This also adds flavour and it aids in attaining the white powdery mould on the surface area which is another indicator saying "I'm ready to eat".
Mike a farmer from Tavistock Devon and one of my mature pupils is here above watching over his daughter Lisa making her first salami. I can tell you Mike brought to class a great tip at this session, he explained he uses a supermarket dairy product as his culture. What is it you're asking right? Well I can tell you it's "Yakult" the health drink you often see advertised on TV.
Yakult contains "Lactobacillus casei Shirota" the same ingredient as supplied by the many specialist suppliers to the meat and cheese-makers market.
On a recent visit to my local supermarket I checked out these health drinks and they were many varieties, including many brands with fruits added.
I can see some people using these to make the smaller snack salami, so c'mon who's game for making some strawberry & chocolate flavoured pork salami?
http://www.yakult.co.uk/ has a great source of information if you have any questions!