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Bombdog

Curing and Cooking with Ruhlman & Polcyn's "Charcuterie" (Part 4)

600 posts in this topic

Just wanted to say hello as this is my first post.  To get the introduction out of the way, I am Jamie and live in Chicago, IL.  Found the site after searching for more info on sausage making to help hone some skills (whatever skills I actually have) and discovered this thread.  I had heard mention of the cookbook in the past but after reading this thread I couldn’t get it fast enough.

Welcome Jamie, those are some gorgeous cured meat pictures. Can't wait to see what you make next!

I'll second your meat pics! They are great! Your pastrami looks really good and I am sure tasted even better than it looked :biggrin:

We've attempted pastrami twice now and have a brisket on it's way to us from Neiman Farms in yet another attempt to keep pastrami on hand at all times (LOL). I'll be you never buy bacon from the store again!

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For those "too wayward to actually subscribe" to Gourmet Magazine, Ruhlman has posted "On Hot Dogs" on his blog.

Arguably the best traditional hot dog in the U.S. is made by Vienna Beef, in Chicago, which dates the hot dog’s arrival from Vienna to the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago. Having grown up on Vienna Beef’s emulsified miracles, I decided to visit the source to see the company’s inner workings.

Interesting that Vienna Beef was so forthcoming about their methods and ingredients.

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Hi all,

I'm making bacon for the first time and have a question. I read in the recipe that it is supposed to release a lot of liquid. My bacon has released some, but I wouldn't call it a lot. I wonder if I might not have used enough dry cure. Could someone give me an idea about how the meat should look right after the dry cure is applied (i.e. should it be extremely caked or only mildly coated) and about how much liquid I should be seeing.

Thanks in advance.

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Hi all,

I'm making bacon for the first time and have a question.  I read in the recipe that it is supposed to release a lot of liquid.  My bacon has released some, but I wouldn't call it a lot.  I wonder if I might not have used enough dry cure.  Could someone give me an idea about how the meat should look right after the dry cure is applied (i.e. should it be extremely caked or only mildly coated) and about how much liquid I should be seeing. 

Thanks in advance.

My experience is that dry-curing produces less (or apparently less) liquid than wet curing. I think moisture which releases into a dry cure is somewhat absorbed by it. With a liquid cure, there is nowhere for the released liquid to go, so it builds up a bit more. My guess is that your bacon will be fine. How many days has it been curing?

When I dry cure, I dredge, so the coverage isn't exactly extreme but it does create a fairly even coating around the entire belly . . . no clumps but no bare spots either. Hope that helps.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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just when I thought I was out of it, I got sucked back into it. I'm once again doing the Have Knife-Will Travel gig again; this time in Madison, Wi at a Tex-Mex joint in a groovy neighborhood. Hey, the pay's good, the hours are flexible, the waitstaff's gorgeous, and we got a smoker on the premises.

With empty rack space.

Anybody got ideas about what I could throw in there that'd benefit from smoking over hickory for 12-13 hours at 225*F? Is that too long or too hot for bacon?

BTW, we're revamping the menu. We're gonna be doing some duck. All hail anyone who gives me a juxtaposition of duck and smoke.


This whole love/hate thing would be a lot easier if it was just hate.

Bring me your finest food, stuffed with your second finest!

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[Anybody got ideas about what I could throw in there that'd benefit from smoking over hickory for 12-13 hours at 225*F? Is that too long or too hot for bacon?

Boston butt/ pulled pork....

Prob to hot and long for bacon...

Bud

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just when I thought I was out of it, I got sucked back into it.  I'm once again doing the Have Knife-Will Travel gig again; this time in Madison, Wi at a Tex-Mex joint in a groovy neighborhood.  Hey, the pay's good, the hours are flexible, the waitstaff's gorgeous, and we got a smoker on the premises. 

With empty rack space.

Anybody got ideas about what I could throw in there that'd benefit from smoking over hickory for 12-13 hours at 225*F?  Is that too long or too hot for bacon?

BTW, we're revamping the menu.  We're gonna be doing some duck.  All hail anyone who gives me a juxtaposition of duck and smoke.

Duck confit, cold smoke, grill.


-Paul

 

Remplis ton verre vuide; Vuide ton verre plein. Je ne puis suffrir dans ta main...un verre ni vuide ni plein. ~ Rabelais

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I'm in the middle of the spice rub for Bresaola and in need of some advice. In Ruhlman's book, the instructions called for making spice rub and divide in half. Rub half the spice in, place in zip lock and store for week and then repeat process with other half - then air dry.

I failed to follow the directions (I chalk it up to my excitement over a successful duck proscuitto and anctipation of cured beef) SO after the first rub and first week, I washed off that rub, padded dry and then applied second - which is now back in zip lock. Question - by washing the first rub off did I hurt the curing process for Bresaola or how can I tell if its ok to air dry?

thanks,

Mike

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I'm in the middle of the spice rub for Bresaola and in need of some advice. In Ruhlman's book, the instructions called for making spice rub and divide in half. Rub half the spice in, place in zip lock and store for week and then repeat process with other half - then air dry.

I failed to follow the directions (I chalk it up to my excitement over a successful duck proscuitto and anctipation of cured beef) SO after the first rub and first week, I washed off that rub, padded dry and then applied second - which is now back in zip lock. Question - by washing the first rub off did I hurt the curing process for Bresaola or how can I tell if its ok to air dry?

thanks,

Mike

Could you talk a little bit about ur experience making the duck prosciutto and any changes you may have made to your recipe


Jeremy Behmoaras

Cornell School for Hotel Administration Class '09

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I'm in the middle of the spice rub for Bresaola and in need of some advice. In Ruhlman's book, the instructions called for making spice rub and divide in half. Rub half the spice in, place in zip lock and store for week and then repeat process with other half - then air dry.

I failed to follow the directions (I chalk it up to my excitement over a successful duck proscuitto and anctipation of cured beef) SO after the first rub and first week, I washed off that rub, padded dry and then applied second - which is now back in zip lock. Question - by washing the first rub off did I hurt the curing process for Bresaola or how can I tell if its ok to air dry?

thanks,

Mike

Could you talk a little bit about ur experience making the duck prosciutto and any changes you may have made to your recipe

Jeremy, I played the duck proscuitto pretty much by the book. Used the salt cure then white pepper - next time will add some garlic and maybe junipers. I was mostly concerned with the drying environment since my first time I relied on my basement (first level in sf) and ruined pancetta. Upon someones recommendation on this site, I bought a tall dorm fridge, small fan and water pan. Duck was the first thing in the chamber and both temperature and humidity were nearly perfect. Did leave in the duck for 9 days because it still felt slightly soft.

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I think you'll be fine since you reapplied the 2nd 1/2 of the rub...go along with teh instructions.

Thank you!

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It's only been 2 days so far.  I dredged it too, and it was evenly coated, but I could still see some meat through the cure, though not a lot.

How's it looking now?

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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It's only been 2 days so far.  I dredged it too, and it was evenly coated, but I could still see some meat through the cure, though not a lot.

How's it looking now?

=R=

Well, today it looks even drier than it did before. In fact, the liquid seems to all but have disappeared. I'm smoking it Thursday morning. That will make about 7.5 days. I'm sure it will be fine, but I just don't know if it will have that cured bacon flavor than I am expecting. Either way, no loss. I'll update when I find out how it tastes.


Edited by A Patric (log)

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An update:

The bacon turned out perfectly after all. It certainly was cured, and actually was the best bacon I've ever had.

At the same time I also made the chicken and garlic sausages and smoked those. They are definitely the best chicken sausages that I've ever eaten My brother couldn't even tell that they were chicken sausages.

I'm looking forward to the next two things on the list which will both be for Christmas:

The American-style glazed ham, and the sopressata (sp?)

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A Patric, that's a great idea to make sopressata for Christmas. I've been away from the thread for a bit - have you started yours already? I've never made it before, - got the beef middles a while ago so I could, then got distracted by summer. If you haven't already made yours, let's do it together. Cyber-together, that is.

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Abra,

Sounds great. The only problem, though, is that I need to freeze my fat for about another 9 days. At that point, I'd be ready to get moving, but I am going to be out of town for a week from Dec 3rd to the 10th, and I won't have anyone who I can trust to know when to pull the sausage at the right moment. Since the recipe calls for 2-3 weeks of drying, that could cause some problems. So, I'll probably wait to make it until right before I leave as I can at least count on someone to wipe it with brine if any odd mold begins to show. That will be on the 30th or the 1st (somewhere in there). If you are willing to wait, great; if not, completely understood.

Best,

AP

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Well you guys were right, this stuff is acctictive. I got the book over the summer, but since all I ever saw of the summer was the restaurant and bed, I couldn't start some projects until now. I started with the Duck Procuitto, and after that decided to start on sausages. Even without making a single sausage I still felt compelled to buy the Grizzly stuffer. It's like a weird compulsion

I just finished making some of the breakfast sausage for my Mom's B&B, and was almost reluctant to let her guests eat them since they came out so well, and I just wanted to keep them all for myself.

The first thing I wanted to do after making the first batch was to make another one. I wanted to make the Chicken and basil one's but my buther didn't have any back fat, so he had to order it. Instead I think I'm going to try the garlic sausage. Has anyone tried that one yet?

I'm a little nervous to start working with the casings, as I can see that going horribly wrong, but I'm still excited to try.

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Well you guys were right, this stuff is acctictive. I got the book over the summer, but since all I ever saw of the summer was the restaurant and bed, I couldn't start some projects until now. I started with the Duck Procuitto, and after that decided to start on sausages. Even without making a single sausage I still felt compelled to buy the Grizzly stuffer. It's like a weird compulsion

Welcome to the club! :biggrin:

I just finished making some of the breakfast sausage for my Mom's B&B, and was almost reluctant to let her guests eat them since they came out so well, and I just wanted to keep them all for myself.

LOL! I know the feeling. Happily, the fact that most of these items are perishable keeps me from hoarding them.

The first thing I wanted to do after making the first batch was to make another one.

That's exactly how I felt and still feel. It's absolutely the best way to learn and improve your skills.

I'm a little nervous to start working with the casings, as I can see that going horribly wrong, but I'm still excited to try.

Every once in a while, casings misbehave. But again, the more you work with them, the more familiar you'll become with the variables. I've probably made 75 batches of sausage since I started with this work and even now, the outcomes sometimes surprise. I often compare it to bread-baking. Both it and charcuterie are such rewarding types of cooking.

Please keep us updated on your projects.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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Well, it's been 8 months since I started my first curing project, the salt cured ham.

I prepared it just like the book instructed; covered in lard and cracked peppercorns, wrapped in cheese cloth, and then left it to hang in the back of my chamber through many, many other projects. I pulled it at 6 months to check the wt. Then again at 8. Last week it finally seemed to have the right combination of wt loss and firmness.

gallery_16509_1680_252965.jpg

Here it is after unwrapping and wiping off the majority of the lard. I was a bit concerned, as it just didn't look very appetizing.

gallery_16509_1680_100088.jpg

But then I began to slice of some thin pieces from the large end. MMMMMM, yummy!

Very pleased with the results. Of course, now I need to be starting another if I want more by next August!


Dave Valentin

Retired Explosive Detection K9 Handler

"So, what if we've got it all backwards?" asks my son.

"Got what backwards?" I ask.

"What if chicken tastes like rattlesnake?" My son, the Einstein of the family.

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Looks very nice. How is the flavor? Prosciutto like? or different entirely

Well, I guess it's proscuitto like, in a general way. It doesn't have the depth of flavor you would get in a good proscuitto. Then again, it's not from any kind of special pork.

I've discovered a local producer of free range heirloom pork. Hopefully next week I'll have a new supply of shoulder, etc for the next batch of products. My intention is to do the next ham with one from these folks.

I'll let you know late next summer what kind of difference there is :biggrin:


Dave Valentin

Retired Explosive Detection K9 Handler

"So, what if we've got it all backwards?" asks my son.

"Got what backwards?" I ask.

"What if chicken tastes like rattlesnake?" My son, the Einstein of the family.

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