Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Upcoming Charcutepalooza Challenge

This month the challenge is to cure something. I'm going to go back to one of the first things I cured and try to improve it a little. The recipe is a formulation by Chef Bob del Grosso and the only time I made it, I loved it. I shared some of the finished prodect, but I ate a lot of it myself. I am hoping lightening strikes twice.

Since I can't just make it again, there will be two changes. First, I'm using a different wine. This one was recommended by a staff member at Empire earlier today. For the second change, I'm going to try and use that "good mold" starter culture again. If I didn't already have it in the freezer, I'd probably skip it.

I just put the pork but in the fridge to start thawing. I picked it up at the Sweet Tree Farm stand at the Troy Farmer's Market a few weeks ago. I asked the gentleman running the stand if the pork had been frozen for more than three weeks. He got a little bit of an unhappy look on his face. I think he thought I wouldn't buy it if it had been frozen longer than three weeks. I explained that I was planing to cure the pork and that's why I wanted to know. He looked relieved to have his sale back and told me the meat had been frozen for a little over two months. He then added, "You don't have to worry about trichinosis with this meat. I don't feed them crap."

I have been curing meat off and on for a few years. Probably more off than on, but I have purchased frozen pork 6 or 7 times and asked about freezer time. This was the first time the person I asked knew why I was asking. An impressive surprise.

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