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viva

Pork Cake

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Viva, beautiful cake! And great shots all the way through.

Andie, thanks for posting the recipe -- a bow to Meemaw and your aunt as well. Thannks to all the recipe/pics and discussion I'm now thinking the mincemeat would be ideal in my cornbread dressing for T-Day. :wub:

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What a thread!! Great photos, viva! I really can't imagine how this cake tastes. Maybe some weekend...

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viva   

Another little update: I made another one of the pork cake recipes. This is one of the boiling water/chopped fat types:

¾ pound very fat pork, chopped

1 cup sherry (I used rum)

¼ cup light molasses

1 cup light brown sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon cloves

½ teaspoon allspice

4 cups sifted flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

¼ cup chopped orange peel

¼ cup chopped lemon peel

½ cup seeded raisins

½ cup currants

½ cup walnuts

4 eggs

(I used a different combination of dried fruits ... cherries, pears, etc)

Pour boiling water over pork and let stand 10 minutes. (The water kind of half-cooked the pork - it turned opaque instead of pink, and the fat softened. Here’s what it looked like whilst standing)

gallery_19995_308_1100036953.jpg

Drain and chop by hand. (I chopped to about ⅛-inch)

Mix with liquor, spices, molasses, and sugar.

Sift flour, salt, and baking soda together, add fruits and nuts, and stir well. Add to pork fat mixture & stir to mix. Add eggs & stir to mix. Pour into a greased loaf pan. (I used a Bundt pan & another mini-loaf… here’s the batter before baking…)

gallery_19995_308_1100037040.jpg

Bake at 350 for 2 hours. (My cake only needed 90 minutes in a Bundt pan)

And here’s a shot of the mini-loaf & interior:

gallery_19995_308_1100037179.jpg

The chunks in the cake that look like pork? They’re pork. I diced to about ⅛ inch after the boiling water step, but you could still see ‘em and taste ‘em.

I must say that it did not have the complexity of flavor that came from the mincemeat recipe, and it was *a lot* heavier... kinda sat in my stomach like a rock. MeeMaw's recipe, I think, distributes the fat and meat throughout the dough better for moistness and flavor. The little pork chunks were interesting, but may put some people off.

The MeeMaw cake will definitely be my gift cake. :wub:

I’m glad to see folks interested in this! Crescat Pork Fat, Vita Excolatur: "May the use of pork fat grow from more to more, and so be human life enriched" :wink:

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viva   

Just wanted to let y'all know that MeeMaw's Pork Cake went over famously - a call was even made to Grandma in Texas, who requested the recipe. That's an accolade!

We put it on the T-Day dessert buffet, not bothering to note that it contained meat (no one attending has any aversions to pork) - half the cake was gone by the end of the night without the slightest suspicion. I also gave her the jar of mincemeat, which was difficult to part with.

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Just wanted to let y'all know that MeeMaw's Pork Cake went over famously - a call was even made to Grandma in Texas, who requested the recipe.  That's an accolade!

We put it on the T-Day dessert buffet, not bothering to note that it contained meat (no one attending has any aversions to pork) - half the cake was gone by the end of the night without the slightest suspicion.  I also gave her the jar of mincemeat, which was difficult to part with.

You are a kind soul, viva! :rolleyes::biggrin:

I used the basic idea for the pork mincemeat, but changed some ingredients as my purpose was to use it for dressing and cornbread sticks. It turned out to be a most successful experiment. Notably, I did not use any of the candied fruits such as citron, but did use dried apples and golden raisins, then some dried pears in place of the candied fruits -- the pears are so close to candied anyway. Also I used bourbon in my version (mostly because I left it up to my mr to pick up rum or bourbon, whichever he preferred because other than the small amount to go in the mincemeat he'd be the one drinking it :wink: ). Oh, yes, yes, and one large yellow sweet onion, which replaced some weight of the candied fruit. And I added a good bit of sage which is really delicious and gave it an earthy smokiness. Other than that I followed right along. It is a definite keeper for future cornbread dressings and special cornbread sticks and wedgies. :biggrin:

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I'm so pleased MeeMaw's recipe stood up to the family tryout.

I have made up a double batch for the cake and also for a savory pie and for empanadas.

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amccomb   

Bump!

MeeMaw's Pork Mincemeat

How long will this keep? I'm nervous about having meat at room temp, but I want to try this! You don't need to do any canning/pressure cooker magic with this?

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Bump!
MeeMaw's Pork Mincemeat

How long will this keep? I'm nervous about having meat at room temp, but I want to try this! You don't need to do any canning/pressure cooker magic with this?

If you are worried about room temp storage, you can process it in a water bath, as you would any high acid fruit preserves, jam or etc., for 15-20 minutes at a simmer

Between the liquor and the cooking the stuff is pretty well preserved, just about as well as commercial mincemeat. If you have any doubts, you can always keep it in the fridge, or it can be packed in freezer containers and frozen. I don't recall it ever being on the shelf for very long, it got used up fairly rapidly. The flavor is not at all like commercial mincemeat.

I made some last Thanksgiving and used most of it in tarts. Someone ate the rest directly from the jar as I found the empty jar with an ice tea spoon sitting in the sink.

By the way, I also make a mincemeat, very similar to the pork recipe, using beef or turkey jerky. I make my own but if you can find the kind that comes in thick slabs, you can grind it coarsely and use it. That way there will be much less problem with spoilage, if that is your main concern.

Somewhere in my hoard of old kitchen lore I have a recipe for mincemeat made from "bully" beef or salt beef. I haven't looked at it for years but if I can find it I will type it up and post it. As I recall, it required the salt cured beef to be boiled for several hours in multiple changes of water to extract the salt.

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viva   

I gotta make this again. I'm really hungry for pork mincemeat now. I am completely trying the stuffing variation too... as soon as the freaking weather here cools down and I can turn on the oven again.

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A Patric   

I am totally going to find a reason very soon to make Meemaw's cake.

It is a must.

Alan

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Ktepi   

Just wanted to revive the thread to say:

1: I made MeeMaw's Pork Cake, and it's great. I made a few substitutions that I won't dwell on, because they weren't made for preference but because I was making it on the spur of the moment and tweaked based on what I had in the house -- nothing extraordinary, but I used fewer nuts than called for, for instance, added some duck fat and duck skin to bring the fat content up to weight, and left out the citrus peel.

It's really, really good. Does the cake itself keep forever, like other fruitcakes do?

2: A couple days ago, I was making a simplified sort of fried rice as a side with some spicy chicken -- no soy sauce, just dryish leftover rice stir-fried with leftover cooked greens and chiles -- and added a scoop of the pork mincemeat on a whim. It was terrific -- looked like dirty rice that was skimpy on the dirty, and the mincemeat was just fantastic with the greens.

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The cake keeps a long time. Wrap it in muslin soaked in fortified wine (sherry, port, or ???) then in aluminum foil and store in a cake or cookie tin. I have had better luck with the tins than with containers such as Tupperware.

I have one of the large tins that "Danish" butter cookies are packaged in at Christmas time. Works great.

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Ktepi   
The cake keeps a long time.  Wrap it in muslin soaked in fortified wine (sherry, port, or ???) then in aluminum foil and store in a cake or cookie tin.  I have had better luck with the tins than with containers such as Tupperware. 

I have one of the large tins that "Danish" butter cookies are packaged in at Christmas time.  Works great.

I have one of those too! Okay, excellent, thank you.

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Lan4Dawg   

was given a cook book that will make all of you drool w/ envy, "The New Dixie Receipt Book" by Annie R. Gregory assisted by one thousand homekeepers (that is exactly how it reads). The publisher was Phillips-Boyd Publishing Co. of Atlanta and the copy right is 1907. It belonged to the aunt of the dear friend who gave it to me. Unfortunately it is not in the best of shape so I am treading lightly but found it interesting (& topical--yes I am getting there) that pasted in side the front cover of the book is a news paper clipping of a receipt for "pork cake". The pork cake receipt is included w/ one for sponge cake and pound cake. The receipt (& the news paper name is not included but I imagine it is either the Atl Journal or Constitution--they were competing back then) is as follows:

"Chop one pound of fat pork. There must be no lean! One pint of boiling water. One even tablespoon of baking soda. One cup of brown sugar. Two cups of molasses. One tablespoonful of cinnamon. One tablespoonful each of cloves and allspice. One pound each of seeded raisins and currants. One half pound of shredded citron. Flour for a rather stiff batter. Make into a cake and bake about three hours.

If desired this may be added to the above: One pound of Sultana raisins. One-half pound each of chopped figs and raisins. One quarter pound each of shredded orange and lemon peel."

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A Patric   

Bringing the thread back. I never did have the time to make it, but I'm really thinking that I might do so tomorrow--at least the first part.

I am still dreaming of this cake.

Has anyone else made it with success?

Is it a moist cake?

Alan

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A Patric   

Well, I made the pork mincemeat this morning. It was pretty straightforward. Unlike Viva, I can taste the pork in the mix, but it is very subtle, though it adds a delicious richness to the mix that is noticeable. I love pork, so I was hoping to be able to taste it a bit. I used some freerange Berkshire hog meat, which is quite a bit fattier--marbled--and flavorful than regular pork, and so it probably ended up tasting a bit porkier than if I had used regular pork.

Next weekend will be the cake.

By the way, the recipe for mincemeat definitely, as Viva mentioned, results in much more than the final cake recipe calls for, so there is probably enough for several cakes, and I bet that if this stuff is vacuum sealed and frozen that it would work just fine for next year's cake.

Finally, it seems to me that the recipe is calling for cooked pork. However, since Viva used raw pork, from what I could tell, and since using cooked pork seemed somewhat odd, I just used raw pork, and everything worked out just fine. Also, regarding the section that talks about draining fat, I also didn't have any fat at all that needed draining, so I think that this part of the recipe can probably be removed.

I'll keep everyone posted on the final cake next weekend.

Alan

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Alan, this recipe was originally made from home grown fully adult hogs with a lot of fat on them. The meat was much darker and far more fatty than "modern" pork.

My family did not breed hogs to produce "The Other White Meat."

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viva   
Well, I made the pork mincemeat this morning.  It was pretty straightforward.  Unlike Viva, I can taste the pork in the mix, but it is very subtle, though it adds a delicious richness to the mix that is noticeable.  I love pork, so I was hoping to be able to taste it a bit.  I used some freerange Berkshire hog meat, which is quite a bit fattier--marbled--and flavorful than regular pork, and so it probably ended up tasting a bit porkier than if I had used regular pork. 

Next weekend will be the cake. 

By the way, the recipe for mincemeat definitely, as Viva mentioned, results in much more than the final cake recipe calls for, so there is probably enough for several cakes, and I bet that if this stuff is vacuum sealed and frozen that it would work just fine for next year's cake.

Finally, it seems to me that the recipe is calling for cooked pork.  However, since Viva used raw pork, from what I could tell, and since using cooked pork seemed somewhat odd, I just used raw pork, and everything worked out just fine.  Also, regarding the section that talks about draining fat, I also didn't have any fat at all that needed draining, so I think that this part of the recipe can probably be removed. 

I'll keep everyone posted on the final cake next weekend.

Alan

Oh, cool! I can't wait to see your final cake results. Yeah, I figured that since the mincemeat was going to be cooked that it would be okay to use raw pork fat to start (plus, see my second non-MeeMaw cake that called for slightly cooking the pork fat in boiling water and the little bits of pork present in the cake - that wasn't too pleasing to the eye)

I need to make more mincemeat. It's time. I'm totally hungry for it now. I might mess around with the dried fruits - there have been some lovely figs at the middle eastern market recently. That and some dried apples, and maybe sultanas or dates... yum.

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While I was visiting with my dad in late October, we were talking about the pork mincemeat and MeeMaw's cakes and other goodies made with the mincemeat.

He reminded me that she also made little tiny sausages from the mincemeat long before "cocktail" sausages appeared. They were heated and doused in a sweetish mustard sauce and served with half-sized biscuits for a New Year's Eve snack (along with a bunch of other hot and cold nibbles. I barely recall them but my dad says they were about half the length of breakfast sausages.

He said she also used the mincemeat in a sort of strudel, spreading it on the dough and rolling it up as one would a strudel and baking it in the log shape so when it was cut it showed a spiral formation. I don't remember this at all but my dad has an excellent memory and can recall her making big batches of the mincemeat right after the hogs were butchered and the mincemeat went into many dishes, including "filling" in winter squash, baked apples, and layered with "noodles" - which I take to mean the big flat home made noodles that were sort of like a cross between pie dough and biscuit dough rolled out to about 1/4 inch thickness and cut with a pastry wheel into strips. MeeMaw put them into soup, stew and etc., so the meals would be more "filling." THOSE I remember well.

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I'm bumping up this topic because it's fruitcake time again and I spent time yesterday prepping for today as I am making a batch of the pork mincemeat for cakes, empanadas, tarts, stuffing and "sausages."

(I've ordered some of the 21ml clear collagen casing material to make cocktail sausages.)

I am using raw pork as I just got 1/4 of a hog that my neighbors and I purchased several months ago and had raised and fattened almost to the bursting point. It was butchered on Monday and broken up into easily handled portions and prepared for freezing. I picked it up yesterday and now most of it is in my freezer.

A good section of the loin has been cut up and ground for inclusion in the mincemeat. As Viva mentioned in her post, putting meat like this through the meat grinder is such a satisfying task.

I have a lot of dried apples from a local grower, dried pears from another local grower and other dried fruits I dried myself.

This year I am going to ship one of the cakes to my dad and another to my relatives in Kentucky to see if they think it is close to Meemaw's cake.

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I have tried with no success to make mince meat many years ago. It was so bad the dog wouldn't touch it, I must have done something wrong, like starting.

This thread has inspired me to do it right this time but I have a question. It seems to me that I have read that the mincemeat must "cure". Is this correct. If you do store it does the flavor improve?

Is it really the cake in MeeMaw's recipe that has to "cure"?


Edited by RobertCollins (log)

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You can use the mincemeat immediately - you can eat the cake immediately.

It is not a "fiddly" recipe, it can be tweaked any number of ways to make it work better for you.

Either use fresh, very lean pork or use cooked pork leftover from a roast. I put that in the recipe because I happened to have done it that way when I wrote out the recipe, after getting the info from my aunt.

The cakes keep very well and are not as heavy as regular fruitcake. They can be moistened with fruit juice as well as with liquor.

I don't use raw liquor to "dress" my cakes because I am allergic to raw alcohol.

The mincemeat recipe makes enough for (I think) three large cakes or one cake and turkey or goose stuffing or just a casserole of stuffing.

If you are not into canning don't bother. Freeze it.

It freezes well and maintains its flavor and texture for at least six months. I've never been able to keep it longer because I use it up rapidly.


Edited by andiesenji (log)

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