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Creola

Making Cracklings

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rest depot 007.JPG I found some really meaty pork belly at the supermarket today and it was pre-cubed so I bought about 16# to make crackings. We washed the meat and put in a jambalaya pot over a burner outside to cook. Started it real low to melt the the fat slow ,and when the fat started coming out turned the heat up a little. It cooked about four hours and was put on a tray and salted while hot. Delicious on white bread and with a cold beer. When done I took chicken wings with a Thai marinade and fried them in the pork fat . rest depot 010.JPG
Edited by Creola (log)
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Nice looking gratons....have you ever tried the twice fried method? You cook the pieces down until the fat is rendered and just beginning to turn golden. Then you remove from the lard, drain, and allow to cool. Return to a pot of hot fat, and you will end up with a nice puffy, light crackling.

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You can also do chicken, duck and turkey skin, simple,no mystery in the process, we do it all the time.-Dick

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Thank you HungryC,yes we have tried the twice fried , which is good for skins but these bellies had a lot of meat and they were cut a little fatter than we would have cut them so we cooked them slow so the meat wouldn't get hard. I have also come home and re-fried cracklins from meat markets that have cooked them greasy.I'm sure you know the ones I'm talking about , everyone can make cracklins but not everyone can make good cracklins lol. Also they usually blister as they sit.

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Those look great! I need to learn how to do something with the skin, usually with a bit of fat on it, from making bacon. I tried to dry the skins before, but I don't have a dehydrator. My oven only goes about 215F or so at the lowest setting. I used a Weber kettle that I could keep at the 150F - 165F range, but the skins "cooked" and would not puff at ll when deep fried. They had a pretty oily taste as well.

I'd love to be able to do cracklin's, either with skin & fat, or with the smaller pieces of belly still containing meat that are not so suitable for bacon. What is the twice fried approach?


Perpetual Novice Living Abroad: High in the Cordilleras of Luzon

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dcarch, I would love to know just how you managed to create these? They look amazing!!

I follow a Heston recipe. Cut away all fat from the skin, dehydrate at 50 - 60'c in the oven. Take them out and reserve. Heat the oven up to 240'c, then place the skin on a wire rack back at the top of the oven above a roasting tray of boiling water. About 5 to 10 mins later you've got the most amazing little puffed curly bites of porky goodness.

Insanely good. I always add a spice mix, although I've never done the same one twice!

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dcarch, I would love to know just how you managed to create these? They look amazing!!

I follow a Heston recipe. Cut away all fat from the skin, dehydrate at 50 - 60'c in the oven. Take them out and reserve. Heat the oven up to 240'c, then place the skin on a wire rack back at the top of the oven above a roasting tray of boiling water. About 5 to 10 mins later you've got the most amazing little puffed curly bites of porky goodness.

Insanely good. I always add a spice mix, although I've never done the same one twice!

The Heston recipe didn't work for me. I just ended up with pork bits tougher than rock candy. I would love an alternative method. :biggrin:

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I've used the method that was alluded to in the Modernist Cuisine. Similar approach - blanch the skin, dehydrate, and deep fry. Worked great, and super crunchy.


Edited by Baselerd (log)

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The method I use is for low fat cracklings. Low fat because I like to eat a lot.

1. Boil pork rind to render fat.

2. After boiling, cool and scrape off still more fat.

3. Set dehydrator at high heat, with fat side of pork rind down on paper towels and dry for at leeast 12 hours.

4. Using a convection toaster oven preheated at 380F and bake the rinds with fat side down. In just a few minutes, the cracklings will be ready.

Practically fatless!

dcarch


Edited by dcarch (log)

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Thanks dcarch - I must try this immediately! :smile:

Does the curling effect in your photo happen naturally with these, or did you curl them up before heating them at the end?

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Was looking for ways to make crackling and found this thread. Dcarch, if you read it, would you mind answering the question about curling?

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In the meanwhile, I have figured it out, the curling happens naturally...

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I use the method described in Heston Blumenthal at Home: you remove the skin from the pork belly and scrape off as much fat as possible before seasoning it. The skin is cut into bite-sized pieces and dried in an oven at 70C for 5 hours on a cooling rack. You remove it from the oven and crank the heat up to 240C. Park a tray of water in the oven then return the rack of pork skin to the oven for about 10 minutes.


Edited by ChrisTaylor (log)

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