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jmolinari

Curing and Cooking with Ruhlman & Polcyn's "Charcuterie" (Part 5)

538 posts in this topic

I just took down a batch of pepperone that I made from the book. I used some pork and pork fat in addition to the beef that the book recommends. Its good. I think it will be really good once the sourness from the bactoferm subsides. I used quite a bit less bactoferm in this batch that in my previous one but the yeasty taste is still there, just not as much. I think it could also take a little more red pepper. I used the amount of cayenne called for in addition to some other peppers (not super hot) that I ground myself.

One observation...the first batch of dried sausage i stuffed into hog casings. This batch I used beef rounds which are 1/4" to 1/2" larger diameter. Despite being larger this batch cured mush faster than the previous batch in hog casings. 12 days vs. about 22. I don't know if anyone else has noticed this..and it could just be due to a difference in the environment or something else.

I've got a batch of lamb sausage hanging now. It has rosemary and a lot of garlic in it (I don't get to use much garlic because my wife doesn't tolerate it very well). Can't wait.


Edited by BRM (log)

Anyone who says I'm hard to shop for doesn't know where to buy beer.

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I just took down a batch of pepperone that I made from the book. I used some pork and pork fat in addition to the beef that the book recommends.  Its good.  I think it will be really good once the sourness from the bactoferm subsides.  I used quite a bit less bactoferm

Its not the amount of bactoferm, its the amount of sugar/dextrose...The bugs in the bactoferm eat the sugar(and the sugars in the meat) and make lactic acid out of it.

Bud

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In case anyone missed it, this post in this week's foodblog features artisinal charcuterie from Ketch Harbour House in Nova Scotia.

Salt-cured organic wild boar liver anyone? :raz:


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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While not quite charcuterie, I used the sausage making techniques (spices, ice cold wine, paddling the meat to get a good bind) in making hamburgers for Memorial Day, and even though I didn't grind the meat myself, the difference was astounding.

Home made burgers that neither turned into meatballs nor fell apart on the grill.


Edited by Dave Weinstein (log)

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While not quite charcuterie, I used the sausage making techniques (spices, ice cold wine, paddling the meat to get a good bind) in making hamburgers for Memorial Day, and even though I didn't grind the meat myself, the difference was astounding.

Home made burgers that neither turned into meatballs nor fell apart on the grill.

There are a couple of good hamburger meat threads here's one and here's another. The interesting thing is that most of them agree that you should handle the meat as little as possible after grinding. Paddling would seem to defy that advice. But, if you liked that is what matters. Grinding my own hamburger has been one of the great side benefits of having a grinder.


Anyone who says I'm hard to shop for doesn't know where to buy beer.

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i just posted a topic asking for help in what makes a good curing room, and id really appreciate the help of all the brilliant folks on this thread.

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=103398

GREAT topic idea, maher. I'll post my cabinet info in a bit... interestingly, cigars are held at a similar humidity as most sausage curing (around 70% humidity), so I have been playing with humidifiers for made for humidors.

A question for the bacon-heads: what is the flavoring (meaning aromatics... I assume the salt, sugar, and pink salt are all the same) difference between typical bacon and Spanish beicon, or for that matter flavoring in Italian pancetta and Spanish panceta?

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As a new member I thought I would post my two ventures so far. Last week I made a hot Italian sausage straight out of "Charcuterie". What an awesome book! We had friends over and I fried off some samples that got raves, then stuffed homemade pasta, boiled it for about 5 minutes and served with a tomato sauce. Incredible flavor. My hat is off to Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn for their book.

The current venture is bacon and pancetta. I got a pork belly from a local "specialty" butcher (although I have some doubts about them as they do not stock fish with their heads on) which was 4 to 5 inches thick. The squared off portions are curing as "salt pork" while the bacon and pancetta are curing with the basic cure, minus the pink salt (although the pink salt portion is replaced with Kosher salt). I got the dextrose from my local beer making supplier, Butler Winery, and urged them to stock the few additional ingredients that would benefit cheese and sausage makers. They were amenable to the idea.

When my bacon is cured, I will smoke it on my grill. I did an experiment last night. Take a 28 oz can of tomatoes, remove the tomatoes and eat them, remove the bottom. Take one leaf of a newspaper, spritz with cheap food oil (Canola, etc.), crumple it into the bottom of the can, put 4 charcoal briquettes on top of the paper, light the paper to get the coals to ignite. In the meantime, have your smoking hardwood soaking in water (and in pieces large enough to fit over the can). When the coals start smoking, put your bacon in the grill on the side opposite of the can of coal. When the coals stop smoking, add one new briquette to the coals and the hardwood a stick at a time over the top of the can to get the smoke going again. The internal temp of the grill space will reach 180 to 200. Monitor the internal temp of the bacon until it reaches 150. This could take several hours, depending on thickness and the amount of heat generated. This is a poor man's way. However, since I have not used nitrites or nitrates, this should be safe, if I have read the caveats properly. This is very similar to the oven method suggested in "Charcuterie" but has the added benefit of providing smoke and not using nitri/a/tes.

Thanks to all who post here. You are a font of information and often wisdom.


etherdog

Bloomington, IN US

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etherdog,

Glad to have you on board! Always good to hear new ideas and even better to hear the results. I went to my nephew's high school graduation celebration last night and part of my present to him was a pound of my regular bacon and a pound of my garlic stuffed bacon. As well as a piggy bank with $100 of coins in it. He loves pork! Probably end up as a politician, don't blame me!

Have fun!

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Hi all,

Hope this question hasn't been asked before (just did a search, but didn't find anything).

What are the guidelines on making dry-cured products from frozen meat? Does the size matter?

Can I, for example, do a whole dry-cured ham from a frozen piece? I'm worried about the long thawing time at proper temp. I've read some recommendations for the initial curing phase of a whole ham to keep it at 36-40 degrees. If so, would I even need to thaw it first, or could I just coat it in a salt or salt/sugar mix and thaw at the same time?

I did read that some folks had made duck prosciutto from frozen breasts, and I've made cold-smoked, hot-smoked, and fresh sausages from previously frozen meat with no problems (and then re-froze them). Is it okay to make dry-cured sausage from frozen meat?

I ask because my farmers from whom I've been getting whole and half animals (beef and lamb so far) may not be able to get me a fresh pig because of timing (it would have to be frozen).

Thanks for any info.

Anna

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I made my first batch of salame from pork I'd frozen in order to follow the anti trichinosis guidelines. It turned out fine. Since then I've decided that it isn't enough of a threat in dry cured products to worry about. So, I'd say, go ahead and freeze the meat if you need to. I have not made ham from frozen, so maybe someone else can chime in on that...

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I use frozen pork all the time, don't know if fresh would be better, but frozen is perfectly fine. In fact, some say you SHOULD freeze it for an extended period of time first to kill off any trichinosis

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Just a quick note. We had our first pieces of our cured bacon today and are delighted with the results. Did a hot smoke with charcoal briquettes and maple shavings for about 3 hours then finished in a 200 F oven to bring the bacon to 145 (and let carryover do its job). Just remember that the thinner the slab of meat the less mass there is for carryover.

The taste is awesome and wholesome. if you use the right pig to begin with. I followed the method in Charcuterie except omitting nitrite, which Michael Ruhlman assured me was OK if one is hot smoking, refrigerating/freezing. The only seasoning on this first batch was cracked pepper.

Many thank to MR for his email response, and to him and Brian Polcyn for the book.


etherdog

Bloomington, IN US

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I'm placing an order with Butcher Packer for larger casings for salami and some Bactoferm. I notice a new variety - the F-LC that looks interesting.  It's a mixed culture and says it better controls listeria.  Also has a larger range of fermentation temps than the others.  Anyone use it yet?

Well, I made 5 # each peperone, tuscan salami and finocchiona with the F-LC and am now happily consuming them. I got my first mold ever, which I must admit scared me a little. I used beef middles for the salamis and large hog casings for the peperone. I think I'll use the beef for both next time, as I'd like the larger diameter for the peperone.

The flavor of the peperone is more sour than the last batch, but not unpleasantly so. It may mellow with more age. I'm really happy with both the salamis, could use more black pepper in each, however. My fermentation temperature hardly varied from 62' the whole time, good time of year to hang sausage around here. I tried to measure the ph with a garden variety ph meter but it didn't work at all.

Any one have a fairly inexpensive ph meter that will work on sausage to recommend?

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Hi all,

If any of you have butchering experience, please look at my post at:

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=104419&hl=

I just got my Berkshire pig from the slaughterhouse, and I have some questions about what I think is a type of bloodshot meat, but one that I have not seen before (parts are speckled with little pockets of red--appears to be coagulated blood).

Before I contact the farmers/slaughterhouse, I'd just like to be sure that I'm identifying this properly, and also if it will be a problem.

Thanks much!

Anna

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Dan-

That roasted veggie terrine looks great.

Reignking-

How did the pastrami salmon turn out? I've made it a couple of times since and still love it.

I completely missed this -- sorry! It went over great -- my friends were stunned that I had made it. After first, they were a bit tentative, but I assured them that I had eaten plenty and was doing quite well :)

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Just a quick note. We had our first pieces of our cured bacon today and are delighted with the results. Did a hot smoke with charcoal briquettes and maple shavings for about 3 hours then finished in a 200 F oven to bring the bacon to 145 (and let carryover do its job). Just remember that the thinner the slab of meat the less mass there is for carryover.

The taste is awesome and wholesome. if you use the right pig to begin with. I followed the method in Charcuterie except omitting nitrite, which Michael Ruhlman assured me was OK if one is hot smoking, refrigerating/freezing. The only seasoning on this first batch was cracked pepper.

Many thank to MR for his email response, and to him and Brian Polcyn for the book.

Etherdog, if you have mastered pork belly bacon, get your hands on some pork jowls and go for some guanciale! We just made a bunch, leading to some KILLER artery clogging pasta alla carbonarra! Highly recommended! :biggrin:

On another topic, anyone know why, in Charcuterie, for bresaola it is necessary to apply a cure to the beef twice? According to the book, you make a cure (with TCM #2), apply half and cure for 7 days. Then, you rub in the second round and air cure until done.

Isn't TCM #2 a "time capsule" that allows for lengthy cures? Any ideas?

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Etherdog, if you have mastered pork belly bacon, get your hands on some pork jowls and go for some guanciale! We just made a bunch, leading to some KILLER artery clogging pasta alla carbonarra! Highly recommended!  :biggrin:

On another topic, anyone know why, in Charcuterie, for bresaola it is necessary to apply a cure to the beef twice? According to the book, you make a cure (with TCM #2),  apply half and cure for 7 days. Then, you rub in the second round and air cure until done.

Isn't TCM #2 a "time capsule" that allows for lengthy cures? Any ideas?

I will tackle guanciale at some point in the future but I am not going to take on dry curing just yet. I'd rather get the basics of seasoning and smoking first (I've learned the hard way from other projects not to take on too much, like planting an acre garden the first time you ever garden.)

RE: Bresaola

I imagine that there is a lot of water being pulled from the beef with the first rub application and that for good penetration that water is discarded and then the second rub can penetrate more deeply into the cut of meat. However, I am a relative newbie and you should take what I say with a grain of sea salt. (I do have some experience with molecular biology and that is what guides me in this opinion.)


etherdog

Bloomington, IN US

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This isn't directly from Charcuterie, but it is charcuterie.

This weekend Rowdy and I decided to make boudin noir / blood sausage. We could see why Abra was cursing up a storm while trying to make this alone. This was really a 2 person job for the stuffing.

Anyhow, we got the recipe from hertzmann.com . The result is really delicious. Rowdy made a video of the process which you can see on youtube if you're interested.

Boudin Noir / Blood sausage making video

I've also blogged about it on my blog in my signature in detail.

Excuse the blue cutting board:)

811566685_305ee8c552_o.jpg

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I just got my hands on the book, and can't wait to get stuck into it! The first things I want to do are bacon and pancetta.

Now....does anyone know where I can get pink salt/curing salt/sodium nitrite etc. in Australia?! Mail-order is fine (within Australia). Google searches aren't turning up much relevant information :(

Thanks for any help!

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