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Found 434 results

  1. Trev

    Another lemon confit question

    I did a search here already but failed to come up with an answer to this question, so here it is. I started some lemon confit about 6-8 weeks ago using the basic recipe from Ruhlman's Charcuterie, which is just lemons and course salt. Today I went to inspect them and maybe rotate them for a more even cure. What I found was quite a bit of liquid in the bottom of the container. This brine seems to be inhibiting the curing process for the lemons that are in the bottom. Is it advisable to drain the excess brine, change the salt or maybe just leave it alone? The lemons in the top 2/3 of the container are taking on a nice tan colour, which I understand is the desired effect. Thanks for any help.
  2. Special K

    Mmmmm, Baconnaise!

    From the same folks who brought us BaconSalt. Should be at QFCs in Seattle and at Pike Place Market soon, new website up by October 11th (in the Seattle Times this morning).
  3. I was in Wells next the Sea today and came accross http://de-lish.co.uk/ a small shop in Staithe St, run by an enthusiast. They make and cure their own salami and other meats. They use Cley smokehouse for smoking some. I had excellent rilletes, salami, "stouties" (beef, vegetable sausage cured in stout) etc The enterprise deserves support
  4. PopsicleToze

    Chicken and Andouille Gumbo

    Chicken and Andouille Gumbo Actually, I prepare gumbo in 2 nights. The first night is shopping and making the roux and chicken stock. Many people have reduced the old-fashioned method for roux and can make a quick roux in about 10 or 15 minutes. It’s a fact – verified it with local cooking friends, but the traditional hour-long method works for me. Do it however you want. How dark depends on how dark you like it. A chocolate-brown roux IMHO is too dark and one that is peanut-butter colored (like an old copper penny) is preferred. See the ultimate Gumbo thread for some wonderful pictures on the stages of roux, the trinity, and finished products. Roux 1 c oil (typically use half bacon drippings and half peanut oil) 1-1/2 c flour Vegetable Seasonings (Don't chop them too small; large dice is fine.) 2 large yellow onions, chopped 1 bell pepper, chopped (green bell peppers are traditionally used) 4 ribs celery, chopped garlic, if desired Other Ingredients 3 qt of rich chicken stock ??? (just add until it's your desired consistency) 2 bay leaves a few tablespoons kosher salt red and lots of freshly ground black pepper to taste dried thyme to taste garlic powder and onion powder, or whatever other seasonings you want to add hot sauce Worcestershire sauce meat from 1 cooked chicken (remove skin and bones) – add it at the end so it’s not stringy 1/2 lb andouille sausage, cut into about 1/4" rounds and browned slowly in skillet on both sides 1/2 c of tasso, julienned, if desired 1 bunch parsley leaves, chopped 1 bunch green onion tops, chopped file' rice Bring a stool into the kitchen if you don’t want to be standing too long. Heat oil over medium heat and add flour slowly. Whisk mixture with a wire whisk (a flat-bottomed one works best) in a heavy skillet; cast iron is preferred. Keep whisking until bubbles subside, then switch to a flat-bottom wooden spatula. Reduce heat to low. It takes about an hour. Do not let the roux burn (if you quit stirring it will burn). If you burn it, just dispose of it and begin again. You CANNOT repair a burnt roux. Don’t answer the phone while you're cooking this and don’t leave the stove. Just stir. About the time you are ready to give up, it will start coloring. Just keep stirring constantly until the roux is the color desired, about the color of an old copper penny. Immediately add your vegetable seasonings. They will stop the browning process. Add bay leaves, too. Cook, stirring, until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes or so. Transfer roux mixture to a stock pot (needs to hold about 2-gallons) and place back on medium heat. Slowly add warm stock, stirring in and incorporating each ladle as you go. Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Season well to taste using all of the spices, hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce. Now, just simmer away for about an hour or so for the roux to develop. (Note: Even though it’s against the rules, I also add just a teaspoon or so of file’ at this point, as well as letting the diner add just a bit to his individual bowl after the gumbo is served.) After gumbo has cooked about an hour (you could probably go 30 to 45 minutes if you want), add your sausage and simmer about another half-hour. Skim oil from top, then add your chicken, parsley and onion tops during the last 5 minutes of simmering the gumbo. Serve over white rice. Let the guest add file (about 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon) to his bowl when served, if desired. Also put the hot sauce on the table in case individuals want a little more heat. Serve with French bread or garlic bread. The traditional drink is beer. ---------------------- P.S. Gumbo tastes better the next day, after the flavors have had a chance to come together. If you make it a day early, be sure to stir in the parsley and green onions just before serving. P.S.S. Lots of people add okra, and I like it added. However, if you’re cooking for a group of people and you don’t know preferences, I would just leave it out. If you do add it, add the frozen WHOLE okra (makes it easier for people to remove if they don’t like it) during the last 10 or 15 minutes of cooking. If you cook it too long, it starts to come apart, and a lot of people don’t like that. Keywords: Soup, Main Dish ( RG1198 )
  5. KennethT

    Squab leg confit?

    Has anyone tried doing a squab leg confit? If so, how long did you salt it and how long did you cook it in the fat?? I've done the moulard duck legs confit with decent success - salting for about 12 hours with Diamond Kosher (thanks Paula Wolfert!), then cooking SV (much easier cleanup) at 180degF for about 7 hours... I'd assume that the squab legs would take considerably less time both salting and cooking since the thickness is maybe 1/3 that of a duck leg... also, I think a squab leg is a bit tenderer to start out with.... Any thoughts or experiences???? Thanks...
  6. I have made a few trips to Lancaster, Pa and done the Amish country tourist thing. Among the memorable experiences was a Saturday morning visit to the Central Market in the center of Lancaster. Several vendors there sell cold cut type meats, but what pleased me most were some smoky sausage-type links, tasting a little like pepperoni, but a little softer and much smokier. These links are about 3/4 inch in diameter, and about 4 inches long. They are tied together. They are ready to eat, no cooking. I often dream about these little tasty links, but I live in NJ, and Lancaster is a long ride. Can anyone better identify these links for me, and is there a place maybe in Philly, or anybody in the Amish country that will mail order? (I did not see them at the Reading Market). Thanks very much.
  7. davidcross

    Guanciale; mold?

    My first Guanciale is looking good. It smells clean, fresh, and is firming up nicely after about 3 weeks in the curing chamber at 65% humidity and 55F. First piece slices nicely and it seems great. I've a question… On the outside are some tiny white/straw-colored flecks (ignore darker flecks - this is some remaining Thyme from the cure). They do not penetrate the skin and I am not sure whether it's mold or salt coming out or fat or what. Thoughts? Likely safe? Thank you
  8. I tend to lose all self-control when I go to Sam's. The end result is that I now have a cup and a half of clean bacon fat that I don't know what to do with. So far the only thing that has occured to me is to fry some potatoes with it. Thoughts?
  9. slkinsey

    Bacon Backlash?

    As I have noted a few times recently, it seems like bacon is perilously close to jumping the shark. Not only does it seem like an interminable length of time that internet foodies have been making a fetish of bacon, but even the fast food and "casual dining" megachains have been catching on with their offings of just about everything "baconized." Even relatively late-to-the party old media are starting to go bacon-wild, and as Steven noted, "typically by the time a trend gets recognized by the New York Times it is already on the decline among the people who actually drove the trend." Now Win Rosenfeld of The Big Money weighs in with similar thinking. None of this is to say that I don't still love bacon. It's tasty as hell. But I long ago stopped obsessing about it, eating it every chance I had, and thinking things such as bacon-flavored mayonnaise were charming, cool or even delicious. Thoughts?
  10. guajolote

    Duck Confit

    I have my legs salted and am rendering the fat from the trimmings. It doesn't look like I'll have enough fat to cover the legs. What should I use for the rest of the fat? Schmaltz? Olive Oil? Clarirified Butter? Or where can I buy duck fat in Chicago?
  11. Well, I finally cracked open my copy of Charcuterie. I've had a quick look at the thread(s) and index of the big thread here and I'n not sure if this has been discussed there (probably) but perhaps it warrants its own thread. In any event, I've started thinking about what I need to start having a go at the recipes and began looking at what I need and have started - as have many readers of the book, apparently - the futile search to find things like pink salt here. A quick google search provided a few leads which all proved fruitless. There seems to be a belief that pink salt is illegal to sell here (Ontario). I did a search of the statutes - it's not. But I've been told that at a couple places. It can be readily ordered online. But, I'm digressing a little bit. I had a chat with the butcher at the sausage place in St. Lawrence Market. His take on it was that it was probably hard to find because people/ restaurants want more"natural" products and so are moving away from the use of nitrites. So, do you think this is actually the case? And if so, what are the alternatives. I asked if I could just use salt, and his take on it was yes, but it's not going to give the pink coloration. I believe Ruhlman and Polcyn attribute same antibacterial properties to the nitrites as well though, and particularly to guard against botulism. So, is just using salt bad, and potentially dangerous, advice? And, just to be clear, I'm not talking about dry cured stuff that requires nitrates and nitrites. Cheers, Geoff
  12. Chris Hennes

    Best Charcuterie Cookbooks

    We have a number of very active topics here related to charcuterie: to list just a few... Making Bacon Making Sausage Making Guanciale Making Pastrami Meat Grinders Meat Slicers Sausage Stuffers Smokers Cellars and Chambers for Curing and Aging Clearly then, there is a TON of interest in the topic. We have a HUGE cooking topic on Ruhlman and Polcyn's book (two of them, actually!): Cooking with Ruhlman & Polcyn's "Charcuterie": 2008-Present Cooking & Curing from "Charcuterie": 2005-08 But not much else discussing the other books available. In particular, I own Aidells, Bruce Aidells' Complete Sausage Book Child & Beck, Mastering the Art of French Cooking v. 2 CIA, Garde Manger: The Art and Craft of the Cold Kitchen Kutas, Great Sausage Recipes and Meat Curing Marianski & Marianski, The Art of Making Fermented Sausages Ruhlman & Polcyn, Charcuterie Of these, I think Ruhlman & Polcyn's Charcuterie is maybe the best book for beginners. Some of the recipes are not particularly interesting, but the foundations it lays are solid, and it's very approachable. From there, Marianski & Marianski's The Art of Fermented Sausages is a very technical, in-depth treatise on dry-cured sausages and is an excellent reference. The others primarily serve as sources of recipes for me: some good, some not so good. What books am I missing? What are your favorites?
  13. Chris Hennes

    Charcuterie: Dry-Cured Salami / Salumi

    Of late I've become much more interested in dry-curing my own salami. I make a lot of fresh sausage already, but dry curing is a great and unique challenge, and well-made salami is one of my favorite foods. I think I got hooked for good after making the peperone out of the Ruhlman and Polcyn book (I wrote about that over here). I had made the Sopresatta first, and it was good, but that peperone was AMAZING. I have quite a few books on charcuterie, including the Marianski book dedicated to dry-curing. I do my curing in a wine fridge, I've got a smoker set up, I use the Northern Tool grinder, and a cylinder stuffer with a 5lb capacity. Hell, I've even got an old slicer I got off eBay. I should be totally good to go. But sometimes, you just have one of those days... This morning I threw away twelve pounds of salami that I started curing last weekend. The problem? I killed the starter. Somehow. Dunno what I did, but when my new pH test strips arrived (thanks for the recommendation, Dougal, they worked great), to my surprise the pH had not dropped one bit. But, it turns out the three-year-old bottle of distilled water I was using to make the meat slurry had a pH of 5.5!!! So, this topic is for advice, assistance, and general commiseration about how everything woulda been just fine if only... Advice point 1: when that package of starter culture says "use no less than 1/4 of this package," they have a reason. Because instead, I foolishly followed the Marianski recipe to the letter and included only 0.6 grams of starter. The results speak for themselves. Hey, maybe that's not what did it, maybe there was something else wrong. But $45 in trashed meat later and I'm seriously regretting my decision to skimp on the starter.
  14. Over in the Charcuterie topic, I've been fiddling with curing my own lop yuk, which I did in earnest earlier this spring. But I've been lead to understand that fall is truly lop yuk season, and the pork bellies are starting to appear in my local Chinese grocery. It's time to get some more hanging! I've done a few batches and wrote up this recipe in Recipe Gullet, but I think that it's a recipe that's worth more work and tweaking. I also think it's a very rewarding item for folks getting started with curing meat. Finally, if you have lop yuk on hand, you can start making Naw Mai Fon, or Chinese sticky rice, to your heart's content. Which, if you're like me, is weekly. Dave the Cook also tells me that thinly sliced lop yuk is a great appetizer. So: who's game?
  15. liuzhou

    Pig Face

    I have received a wonderful gift from a lovely friend. A whole home cured, dried pig face. I call her Cameron. This will be used slowly over the winter. I'm dribbling thinking about the ears stir-fried with chilies Hunan style. The cheeks! The snout! I'm ecstatic. Snout I'm watching! I'll follow up with with how I use it, but for the moment I'm just content watching her watching me as she hangs in the wind on my balcony. It's love!
  16. Has anyone tried to cure guanciale (cured pig's jowls) at home? There is a simple recipe in the Babbo cookbook, which also appears on the Babbo Web site: http://www.babbonyc.com/in-guanciale.html I was surprised that the recipe did not call for using any "curing salt." I would love to avoid using curing salt/nitrite, but from some preliminary research, it seems to be a standard curing ingredient in order to kill certain bacteria. I looked at a few recipes for pancetta, and they all use a curing salt, in addition to regular salt. I'm wondering if this is an omission in the recipe, or if it could safely be made without curing salt. Another question: The recipe does not discuss washing the salt off the meat after the cure and before the drying period. This is a step I have seen in pancetta recipes. Another omission of a step that should be followed? Any thoughts on either of these questions? Thanks.
  17. ilikefood

    Venison + Beef = juicy sausage?

    Hello All: I was recently appointed my family's sausage maker. My family had a good deer hunt this year and so there are seven deer to process this weekend. The shoulder and older deer will be made into sausage. We will probably make about 150 lbs. of venison sausage. However, due to religious reasons, pork cannot be used in the sausages. As of right now, I intend to use beef fat in lieu of pork fat. Does anyone have any suggestions how to make a tasty, juicy venison-beef sausage? I will probably add more liquid than usual and if I make any smoked sausages, I will add a good amount of powdered milk. Is there anything else I can do to make a good sausage? Lastly, any good recipes? I made the smoked venison sausage recipe in Charcuterie and will try the recipe again this weekend with beef fat. Thank you in advance! David
  18. Dave the Cook

    Smoking Brisket: The Topic

    The middle child has been yammering all summer for "brisket like we used to get in Texas." I don't have a smoker, but I've got a reasonably-sized (~ 22" x 36") grill. I'm pretty accomplished at ribs and chicken and the usual stuff, but I've never done a big hunk of meat on the grill, and I've never cooked fresh brisket in any form. Make my little girl happy and pass along some tips--I know there's some heavy smokers out there.
  19. Gifted Gourmet

    Glazed Donut Bacon Cheeseburgers

    source for post Actually, this sounds not unlike the Luther Burger named after (the late) singer Luther Vandross ... seems, according to Snopes.com, that he made the burger but had no bread in the house and opted instead for using a Krispy Kreme doughnut .. a mix of salty and sweet tastes ... Does this sound: (a) temptingly different? (b) bizarre and repellant? © a bit too heavy on calories? (d) "this one scares even me!"
  20. I looked (I hope I didn't skip anything) for classes around MO. area and came up with zero. I live in the St. Louis area and willing to drive....how far I don't know. IL. not out of the question. At this time I'm looking for a sausage making class. Yes, that would also be all types. Does anyone have any idea on where? I have found one in CA. use to be one in WA but they are out of business. Thank you for your help, Jane
  21. Chris Amirault

    Char Siu Bao--Cook-Off 2

    Every now and then since December 2004, a good number of us have been getting together at the eGullet Recipe Cook-Off. Click here for the Cook-Off index. For our second Cook-Off, we've chosen char siu bao, or steamed bbq/roast pork buns. You've probably had this dim sum staple many times, often a tough dough encasing a gummy, cloying clump of pork -- . But if you had a good one, you know how ethereal the dough and amazing the double-cooked pork can be. And that's what we're going to be making, pillows of porky perfection! In my two previous home attempts to make char siu bao, the three distinct steps (marinating and cooking the pork; making the dough; constructing and steaming the filled buns) were fun and compelling but rife with screw-up possibilities. Questions I know I'll have include: How does one make perfect dough? What ingredients are crucial? What sorts of tips are also crucial? (For example, I've been told by a dim sum chef that bamboo steam racks are crucial to bao, and that metal steam racks don't work well at all.) What cut of pork, marinated in what concotion (including, essentially, shaoxing wine, aka Chinese sherry), cooked in what manner and for whom long, should we use? Some links to get us started: Here is an eG thread on char siu, broadly defined. Here's a thread on evaluating roast pork buns, with a discussion of NYC restaurants. Here's one on Wow! Bao! that expands rapidly into the tao of bao. I'm not at home, so I don't have any reference recipes to use, but I know I'll be checking Eileen Yin-Fei Lo's Chinese Banquet Cookbook and The Chinese Kitchen (both of which were iffy, if I remember correctly), and Barbara Tropp's Modern Art of Chinese Cooking. Saveur also had a recipe in the back of the issue sometime in 2002 or 03 (anyone remember that?). What other recipes will people be using? So let's go bao!
  22. I found the following in 2-years old UK Wine Telegraph article: "Even Indian chefs are introducing chorizo. During his 'Salaam Bombay' festival, Mehernosh Mody of La Portes Des Indes served a Goan sausage masala, which featured chorizo, slow-cooked for three hours until meltingly soft with a rich spiced tomato and onion sauce." How would you approach cooking this dish? Thank you.
  23. I am trying to figure out how to build a cellar for curing assorted charcuterie. I have a wine cellar that is below ground, its temperature is fairly stable but not 100% stable. It goes to a low of about 8 degrees C in the winter (46 degrees F) to about a maximum of 17 degrees in the summer (63 degrees F). The humidity is fairly high to where the wine labels are getting a bit wet. i am trying to rig some circulation fans to reduce this and bring it down to a somewhat drier clime since i would like to use the cellar to cure meats. Does anyone know what the optimal temperature range/humidity is for this? what are the outside limits? if i start something in the winter will it spoil due to high temp. in the summer? I am concerned that by circulating the air and putting in an extraction fan to lower the humidity i will raise the cellar temperature. Any help from those of you with expertise is much appreciated. also if anyone knows of good books on building the right type of curing room/ sourcing the equipment that would be great. Finally, i am wondering if the cellar would be a good place to age cheese? so the same questions that apply to curing meats apply to aging cheese. Any guidance is really welcome.
  24. Chris Amirault

    Food Safety with Cured or Smoked Meats

    Over in the Charcuterie topic, we've been experiencing odors, textures, and colors that range from sublime to funky to waaaay off. Being thoughtful, Abra raised the question about food safety: Smart points -- but as I thought about it, I realized that I really didn't have any solid information beyond the material covered in Ruhlman and Polcyn's book (which some have seen as excessive) concerning food safety with cured and smoked meats. What are the basics? What are the issues we should be considering? Beyond keeping things ultra clean during prep, what are the things we can do in our home curing chambers and garage refrigerators? And if we have something in that funky range -- how green is green? when does chalky mold become fuzzy mold? -- and are distraught at the thought of tossing our product into the trash, where can we turn to make the right decisions?
  25. Hest88

    Slimy sausages

    I admit; I'm not good with sausages. I think of them as preserved items so I was under the impression they last a good long time. Anyway, we bought some bockwurst a week ago and have had them in the frig. I just took them out of the butcher wrap and the casings are all slimy now. Does that mean we shouldn't try cooking them?