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    Just South of Montreal
  1. So I'm assuming fat 'resists' curing more than meat and so a longer curing time? I'll give it another try. Thanks for the input.
  2. Howdy folks, I've been doing charcuterie for a few years, learning from old timers, books, internet, etc. Made plenty of sausage, mostly Italian. Dry cure maybe 20% of all I make. Also pepperoni, breakfast, boudin blanc, merguez, and coteccino. Made cured, smoked hams and bacon as well as Montreal style smoked meat. I was fascinated with lardo ever since reading about it in Bill Buford's "Heat". In part, I made a pilgrimage to Babbo to try Batali's charcuterie plate which had two slices of this very lardo. I followed Ruhlman's method for lardo; made the dry cure, added above and below the pork slab, weighted down for 12 days, turning a few times. Rinsed, air dried for 21 days. I tried it on Xmas day and it was pretty much tasteless, lacking any depth whatsoever. Anyone have hints on getting a more successful lardo? Thanks.
  3. Walking around the other night, we spied Pois Penche. Quite snazzy with the marble bar, seafood display, artwork, and open kitchen. I read this thread awhile back, but didn't connect it to the restaurant until yesterday. They've been open a couple of months now, anyone eat there for dinner lately? Your thoughts?
  4. Almost any of this stuff makes a great accompaniment when going to a party. Including the roast duck, chicken, pork, and boneless pig knuckle - they even slice it up for you. Only thing, he doesn't do cuttlefish, which you can pick up on St. Laurent. Voila, a last minute master platter!
  5. Or maybe a quality steame?
  6. Now that you mention it, I seem to recall that they did move, although my poor memory tells me it was to a fancier place on Parc (maybe it was indeed Cote de Neiges). When we tried them after the move, we were definitley disappointed never to return... Any suggestions of similar present day joints - maybe regional Vietnamese, something different than the standard pho, grilled meats, etc (which can be all be excellent, just looking for more)?
  7. That's curious, the thread below, marked eating Chinese in MTL discusses Momofuko pork buns at length, but you probably already know that... Since we're talking about something close to my heart, if you like Chinese Roast pork, may I suggest epiceree Sun Sing Lee (or some variation of those words). On the south side of Lagauchetiere between Clark and St. Urbain roughly across from the 7-day buffet. This guy does his own whole hogs. Just ask him and he'll proudly show you his brick-lined oven in the back. For our christmas party, I had ordered a whole one, deboned, chopped, and arranged on my supplied platters. Crispy skin, sumptious meat...ohhh boy. He also does ducks, chicken, pigs knuckles, BBQ pork, etc etc.
  8. BTW, loving pork belly so much, I thought the topic heading was actually "How do you say NO to pork belly in French?"
  9. I just fumbled over this thread and was surprised to find the start date in 2003... Anyways, it got me thinking (steamed buns aside). Chinese favorites can be so subjective and personal. Speak to a friend and they'll say something like "XXXXXXXX has the BEST chow mein cantonese", meanwhile, I'm cringing, 'cause I HAD XXXXXXXX's cantonese chow mein and, well, it was pretty bland. Meanwhile, I bring him to YYYYYYYYY and casually order the plate. Of course, to me, its simply the best in the city, hands down. The friend, though, says "its OK"...WTF? Is it just me? Or is chinese super subjective? And just one more thing. Does anyone recall a vietnamese restaurant, tiny, family run, that closed shop. I'm not sure of its exact location (its only been about 20 years), but I think it was on Victoria just north of Vanhorne, just around the corner from the small mall. They had a million hanging plants in the place, all in various stages of health. One thing is for sure, they had a killer whole fish with chili peppers....OK, if you don't recall this place, can you recommend a family run joint (nothing fancy) offering a similar dish? Just asking.
  10. If you have an Asian store with a meat counter, there will likely be a pile of pork bellies, for less than $4/lb. All you have to do is point ← KV on St Laurent just above LaGauchetiere (Kien Vinh, I think). Loads of pork products in the meat case (bellies, nice hocks, trimmed leg parts), cheap, and good. I've used a few bellies from here to make bacon. Oh, they don't care if you speak french or english (actually I don't think they understand either...not that this is a bad thing...).
  11. I live in a small town with two small rival grocery stores. Being a corner store type of operation, they cannot compete with the big guys in the surrounding larger towns pricewise. One of these guys prided themselves in superior cuts of meat (as perhaps compared to the top chains...) They put a commercial on our local 100 watt community radio station which ended with their slogan "you may beat our prices, but you can't beat our meat." This was maybe 20 years ago, but it still comes up at parties...
  12. I always got a kick out of the Squirt sofdrink. Especially their motto: "Drink Squirt"... And theres a whole line of Cock brand products, like COCK BANANA IN SYRUP close Product Code: 01800 | 24*565G CAN | Cock or Cock Bamboo Sliced (bag)
  13. It was a couple days after halloween and I took the dummy off my front porch. Put a hangman's noose around the neck and hung it by the top tier of the walk-in freezer rack. Scared the bejusus out of the staff one by one. Suckling pig head as delivery guy hood ornament. bit of tomato stem (the green/black crown thing) looks insect-like, so I fold it just under my sleeve. "Hey Mel, somethings been itching my arm. Can you take a look and tell me if you see anything?" So Mel, female line cook, gets up close and personal just as I unfold the bit of sleeve and out pops the stem. She's afraid of spiders. She freaked... I would have been gutted had she a knife in her hand. Funnier yet was John, 50 year old steel worker turned cook. I had whispered "John, watch this" just before turning to Mel. When the stem pops out, he gives a school-girl scream and does a little dance of horror - he's afraid of spiders too! 20oz styro bowl plastic wraps, tubelike and about 30" long. I tell the dishwasher new regs require him to wear the plastic on his arms, like a giant condom, when handling the trash. We let him go for a week and a half on that one ("wheres the extra arm condoms?"). breaded deep fried chicken livers. "Hey whats this?" ask staff as they saunter in to work. "Chicken...its for staff" I reply in all honesty. They grab one, pop it into their mouth and promptly go "yeccchhh", spitting it into the garbage. (except chicken boy #11 who enjoyed 'em and finished them up). and the 'pretend to be electrocuted' gag when moving the toaster is always fun with newbies. not so much a practical joke, but fun nonetheless. I always kept a bottle of high octane hot sauce, like Blair's or The Bomb or Ground Zero for the loudmouth customer who wants "the hottest you got". Dishwashers and waiters generally think Tobasco is the hottest sauce around, so trying to educate them, I offer some of the heat on a toothpick. With a proper warning, of course, but they always accept... fun to see their eyes bug out and visit the ice machine every 5 minutes for an hour.
  14. My Italian friend showed me how to make cotechino; when preparing pork for the grinder, simply save the skin and remove as much fat as possible. Pass the skin through the grinder and mix with the ground pork. Ratio of skin to meat mixture is a personal preference, but I like 50/50. Seasoning can also be varied, I use the same spice mix as with regular Italian sausages. Stuff the mixture into casings and there you have it. My friend said this had to be cooked for a long time and in a certain way. My favorite is to simply braise it in a tomato sauce. The flavors impart both ways into the sausage and into the sauce. I've seen commercial cotechino which look considerably different than my homemade version - looks like you have to boil it in the bag. Just my 2 cents.
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