A delicacy encountered since antiquity, pasto is referred to in folk texts of the Middle Ages as kouroupiasto because it was preserved in clay pots called kouroupia. The traditional curing of the pork involved salting, boiling it in wine or herbs and the removal of all liquids by drying, smoking or boiling in olie oil. A much healthier version of pasto is achieved once the visible fat is removed from the final product. Pasto is preserved in its fat in hermetically sealed ceramic ware. Pasto is a favorite meze of the Messinians and is served as a main course accompanied by local wine.
Pork meat contains high biological value protein, complex B vitamins, iron, zinc, and selenium. It actually constitutes one of the best sources of iron, magnesium, B12 vitamin and zinc. However, it also is a source of saturated (bad) fat and cholesterol. Low consumption of pork is recommended. Compared, though, to the meat of reminants (cows and sheep), pork meat contains more unsaturated fats. The higher amount of sodium due to the curing of the meat should be taken into account if pasto is consumed by people suffering from hypertension or kidney problems.