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Making Guanciale at Home

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Can someone point me to the basic guanciale recipe? I thought it was in CHARCUTERIE but it's not...

Check again; it's on p. 47 in my edition.

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Can someone point me to the basic guanciale recipe? I thought it was in CHARCUTERIE but it's not...

Check again; it's on p. 47 in my edition.

It's not in every edition; my home copy of Charcuterie doesn't have it but I know the copy at work does.

Here's Len Poli's recipe; I've used it and it works.

http://lpoli.50webs.com/index_files/Guanciale.pdf


Hong Kong Dave

O que nao mata engorda.

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Thanks for the Babbo recipe, that should work.

Andrew, my CHARCUTERIE is the first edition and p.47 has drawings of pancetta, no guanciale recipe. If you have a copy you could email or fax me I would love to see it.

HKDave, thanks but that file wouldn't open for me, perhaps it's corrupted.

Does anyone know if the meat should be wrapped in cheesecloth while drying or left naked?

Also, here are some pics of the jowls I got, they're pretty big, over 10" long and about 2" at the thickest point. I have trimmed out several small pea sized nodes that were a brown color. I read in CHARCUTERIE that one should be careful to trim out all the glands, is this what was meant?

It looks to me as though the pieces I have are bigger than the drawings in the book, they have a large covering of fat. Can I use the whole pieces as they are or should I trim them to a more uniform shape?

gallery_61224_6257_376056.jpg

gallery_61224_6257_271208.jpg


Edited by Recoil Rob (log)

My problem lies in reconciling my gross habits with my net income.

- Errol Flynn

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HKDave, thanks but that file wouldn't open for me, perhaps it's corrupted.

Does anyone know if the meat should be wrapped in cheesecloth while drying or left naked?

It's definitely not corrupted; opens fine for me. But it's a .pdf (adobe acrobat) file. Try downloading it and opening with Adobe Reader if it won't open in your browser.

I didn't wrap in cheesecloth, just hung it loosely tented with parchment paper to keep dust etc off. I did the entire drying in the walk-in fridge because the restaurant was too warm for drying in the back room. Worked fine.


Hong Kong Dave

O que nao mata engorda.

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Andrew, my CHARCUTERIE is the first edition and p.47 has drawings of pancetta, no guanciale recipe. If you have a copy you could email or fax me I would love to see it.

Whoops, my bad!

Anyway, I was able to read that .pdf file (but only with Adobe Reader, not the software I usually use.) The first direction is to remove the salivary glands, which sound like the bubbles or nodes you noticed. So it sounds like you did the right thing.

Good luck with the guanciale! I haven't made it yet-- it'll have to wait until I get a curing chamber set up in January or February-- but I'm looking forward to giving it a go myself. Be sure to report on your results!

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Andrew, my CHARCUTERIE is the first edition and p.47 has drawings of pancetta, no guanciale recipe. If you have a copy you could email or fax me I would love to see it.

Whoops, my bad!

Anyway, I was able to read that .pdf file (but only with Adobe Reader, not the software I usually use.) The first direction is to remove the salivary glands, which sound like the bubbles or nodes you noticed. So it sounds like you did the right thing.

Good luck with the guanciale! I haven't made it yet-- it'll have to wait until I get a curing chamber set up in January or February-- but I'm looking forward to giving it a go myself. Be sure to report on your results!

I've actually noticed two different types of little nodes. There the brownish ones I removed but here are also areas of tiny pink bubbles, the same color as the meat. Any idea if these should be removed also?


My problem lies in reconciling my gross habits with my net income.

- Errol Flynn

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On Dec 10 2008, 08:49 AM, Recoil Rob said:

I've actually noticed two different types of little nodes. There the brownish ones I removed but here are also areas of tiny pink bubbles, the same color as the meat. Any idea if these should be removed also?



You can see my jowls here: I only removed the brownish ones, and everything cured up fine.


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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Well, I'm curing.

I ended up trimming out all the salivary glands, even the ones that were the same color as the meat. It wasn't that much, a few tablespoons each and some fat came off with it but from what I read it seemed like a good idea.

For my cure I used a combination of the three recipes (Poli's, Babbo's and the pancetta cure from CHARCUTERIE (1st Edition) which the book stated was the same one to use for guanciale).

1/2c Morton's Kosher salt

1/2c light brown sugar

1/2tsp. Instacure #2 (this was a compromise, one recipe said to use 1-1/2tsp. #2, one said #1 and the other had none)

Garlic, sage, peppercorns, thyme, rosemary & juniper

In the photo they look like fried cutlets but that's the brown sugar. I had some granite slabs that I will put on top while they cure to even them out. There are also two chunks that were thicker than the rest so I cut them off and they are curing also, but probably for less time.

Now it's sit and wait for a week. If they throw off some liquid brine am I supposed to drain it off?

Thanks, Rob

gallery_61224_6257_46296.jpg


My problem lies in reconciling my gross habits with my net income.

- Errol Flynn

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Now it's sit and wait for a week. If they throw off some liquid brine am I supposed to drain it off?

No: let them continue to brine in it. You may be better off putting them in ziploc-type bags so that more of the brine is in contact with the meat.

Are you planning on rinsing them before you hang them? I think the Ruhlman recipe calls for that; I don't know about the others. I did, anyway, and I think it was a good idea.


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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Now it's sit and wait for a week. If they throw off some liquid brine am I supposed to drain it off?

No: let them continue to brine in it. You may be better off putting them in ziploc-type bags so that more of the brine is in contact with the meat.

Are you planning on rinsing them before you hang them? I think the Ruhlman recipe calls for that; I don't know about the others. I did, anyway, and I think it was a good idea.

Rinsed, dried and hanging in 43% RH & 55˚!


My problem lies in reconciling my gross habits with my net income.

- Errol Flynn

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Thanks for the tips posted thus far. One more question - the guanciale that I am now drying seems incredibly fatty. We cut into it after a week of drying to make some amatriciana, and it seems about 10% fat and 90% meat. Should I trim the fat?

I'm confused in part because the Intertubes says that guanciale is leaner than bacon. Alternately, some say that they thought their guanciale was too fatty.

BTW - Chicago-area Gulleters, this organic pork jowl was $3/lb. from Organic Pastures, normally at the Evanston Farmers' Market, but also available throughout the winter on a bi-weekly basis.

IMG_1185.JPG

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My jowls are always far more fat than meat also. Definitely not leaner than bacon.

I've made a couple of batches following the recipe in Ruhlman's Charcuterie and they have been phenomenal.

Speaking of which, what's going on with the recipe missing in some copies of the book? I have the recipe but my friend doesn't and we both have "First Edition" books...

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I have a question for you guys.

I have a basement with an ambient temp of 64F and 74%RH. Would hanging guanciale to cure in here be a bad idea? I know it is not the optimum, 55F and 40%-50% RH but I have noticed that people's conditions for Guanciale seem to vary greatly some people have had success at 34F and 30%RH or I have even seen some folks hold it in the high 50Fs and 75%RH.

Is my space at 64F and 74%RH a bad place to dry guanciale?

For that matter is it a bad place to hang fermented sausages to dry. I know it isn't optimum but would it work and not kill me and others?

G

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dlc, did you add any additional herbs or spices, or follow the recipe verbatim? I've seen a number of references to juniper berries in making pancetta.

bigwino, great idea regarding the use of an oscillating fan.

You would probably just end up flavouring your drip pan. Not a bad thing if it leads you to consider the juices a serviceable liquor instead of dumping it into the refuse stream.


Edited by Vaff Angool (log)

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Sorry for digging up this old thread, but I've been caught off guard by certain events.... Does anyone have the recipe for guanciale from Babbo website stored and would be willing to post it- it's not online anymore, and as many here recommended it, I'd be very much obliged if I could take a peek.

 

The thing is, it's been unusually warm here for a while now, and kolinje (similar to Spanish matanza- season for pig slaughter, most families here raise or purchase their own pig and do a whole ritual of slaughter, butchering, salting, making sausages, &c) has crept upon me. :$ As it turns out, a friend on whom I was hoping to impose to cure me few slabs of slanina- salt cured and cold smoked pork belly, is having his kolinje in around a fortnight. I can source as many pork cheeks as I wish from local butcher at very reasonable price, and was hoping to cure some guanciale as well.

 

I'd like to consult Babbo recipe, but the general outline of my plan was tidying up jowls, washing them in white wine (read about it in FXCuisine's article on guanciale) and applying a dry rub. It would consist of 3.5% of meat's weight in salt, some sugar (probably no more than 10-20% of the weight of salt), and the seasonings would be cracked black pepper, pepperoncino (crushed chile peppers), some dried rosemary and a few juniper berries (I'm still deciding on a hint of sage and garlic).. After curing it in a ziploc bag in the fridge until it absorbs all the cure (I'd venture a guess of 5 days to a week), I'd send it to with my friend to be washed in wine and then air-cured by man in charge of handling their charcutterie.

 

I'd also welcome any comments, suggestions or criticism of my plan, and especially the recipe and the procedure- as I was hoping (since kolinje is once-in-a-year affair) to get at least half a dozen, if not 10 jowls turned into delicious fat rendering delicacy, rather than oversalted, under-cured or otherwise inedible or spoilled meat. Thanks in advance. :)

 

(PS My biggest adventure so far in charcuterie was making oven-cured beef jerky last weekend- generally liked but I found soy sauce overpowering the meat, yet leaving nice aftertaste... might try biltong next time- dry rub of salt, pepper, pepperoncino and a hint of smoked paprika)


Edited by Wolf small corrections and additions (log)

A cigarette is the perfect type of a perfect pleasure. It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. What more can one want?  - Oscar Wilde

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I changed the 'recipe' a bit (after 2nd wash in wine, jowls were rubbed with crushed garlic, pepper and pepperoncino- all of which were then ommited from dry rub). After 8 days in ziploc bags in fridge, one stiffened up considerably, other one not so much, so both were additionally rubbed with salt-sugar mixture during their stay in fridge.

 

Here's a photo of both pieces before I put them in a makeshift curing chamber- a cardboard box on my balcony, with holes for ventilation (later today, I'm going to put a tray with super saturated brine in there.

Guanciale.jpg

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A cigarette is the perfect type of a perfect pleasure. It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. What more can one want?  - Oscar Wilde

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