Tuesday, September 11, 2012
'before' item as well as used it as the header pic for the blog without posting the results. Sorry about that. So, after a touch under 4 months, it was ready. Really not much I can say about it, that the picture can't tell you. It tastes just like it looks......amazing. The recipe is different from my normal speck made from a ham. This has just fresh rosemary, allspice and garlic. Nice and austere. It was smoked for the typical 5 days using beech dust. I'm starting to believe that the wood used for smoking really does make a huge difference. Everything I've smoked with beech tastes exactly like what I ate in Ortisei. I don't suggest any other wood if you're doing this at home. This is really quite simple(casing aside, read the original post to see why it was cased), start with top quality raw ingredients and anyone can produce the same results.
Wednesday, July 4, 2012
Monday, June 11, 2012
speck posts to see about the spicing. Smoking was the same protocol as in previous speck projects. I've been using beech wood dust exclusively to cold smoke all my speck recently. One thing of note I failed to mention was pressing during curing. The speck di coppa/nackenspeck I've seen from South Tyrol have been pressed and uncased. Seeing as I don't care for uncased whole muscles that are skinless and/or unprotected by a thick fat layer, casing it was automatic. Cured 3 weeks, rinsed, cased, smoked 5 days, hung to dry. Roughly 8-10 weeks later(I can't recall exactly and I didn't write it down), 33% weight loss and it got cut down. That's exactly what you're looking at. That dark edge around the circumference of the coppa has given me cause for concern in the past, as it appears to be case hardening. However, pictures I've seen of almost all speck varieties from South Tyrol have this. Since it's not dry, it can logically be described as a smoke ring. This thing is great, think luscious coppa meets smoky, delicious speck.
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Also referred to as Prosciutto contadino in Italian, I stumbled across this salume while researching more sudtirol salumi. The diversity of the salumi in that area is stunning. I'm repeating myself at this point, but, damn, it really is amazing. I was fortunate enough to have 2 mosefund speck hanging when I found this. For all intents and purposes, this is speck cotto or cooked speck. If you've made speck following techniques I've set forward, you should have no issue making this. Here is my previous post on mosefund mangalitsa speck. Same goes for this, cure 3 weeks, smoke 5 days using beech wood(in South Tyrol it's a more gentle smoke over the course of about 20 days), hang to age 2-3 weeks and steam, poach or sous vide to 155 degrees Fahrenheit. I steamed it, took 3-4 hours to get up to temperature. In corresponding with a gentleman from Val Pusteria in South Tyrol, I came to find out that their Bauernschinken recipe was a bit different than their typical speck recipe. It seems they use quite a bit of fresh rosemary. For my next effort, I will adjust accordingly. As for this effort, once again, I am quite pleased. This particular leg weighed about 12lbs. I quartered the finished product, leaving 4 pieces of roughly 3 lbs. To show how good I thought it was, I demolished a quarter in a little over a week. Additionally, I have 3 legs currently earmarked for this.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
As I have stated many times, this is in the style of Piacenza, due to the fact that I'm not actually IN Piacenza. Of course, this is true, even in Italy of DOP items, which Coppa Piacenza is. Piacenza is a town in Emilia-Romagna in the Po river valley which also lays claim to another DOP salume, pancetta Piacentina.
I've wanted to make something in this style for quite some time, however, I have something of an aversion for several of the spices in this. I've used some of them before and I felt they were overwhelming and unpleasant, clove and cinnamon, in particular. But, I was eager to try something different, and I surmised that by using scant amounts of said spices, it would turn out palatable. I went with the usual sea salt, black pepper, sugar combo, along with the spices cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, ginger and coriander. The coppa(again, provided by Michael at Mosefund) started at 2.41kg. After close to 3 months, I removed it at 33% total weight loss. I eagerly cut into it, hoping for the best. I was beyond pleasantly surprised, I was amazed. All those challenging spices together are actually very pleasant. Absolutely nothing overwhelming about any of them. No Christmas recollection at all, which most of these spices do for me. I can aver that this salume will be a mainstay in my repertoire.
Saturday, March 17, 2012
Here is the result of my previous post. Just about 2 months after it was hung to dry, most of them are ready. Yes, they taste as good as they look. I don't think there's much to tweak here. The heat is subtle, yet apparent. It also lingers pleasantly for several minutes after eating. I may just bump the amount of hot pepper powder a touch, as I'd like perhaps a little more up front heat. The amount of hot pepper paste is perfect, I think. Just the right amount of salt as well. These were removed at between 44-45% weight loss, they felt pretty stiff, but proved to still be a good deal moist inside. Overall, very happy with this and it will remain a constant in the repertoire.
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Another lovely cut provided to me by Michael Clampffer at Mosefund farm. This is simply a loin with the fat cap still attached. It is a loin(lonza) + backfat(lardo), hence the "lonzardo" designation. It is the same cut as in my previous Speck di carre' post. In fact, it's the other half of the same piece. This is the loin end. I was unsure about what to do with this. So, urged by Jason to just let the meat do all the talking, I obliged and took the path of austerity. I cured this only with sea salt, cure#2 and black pepper for 17 days. Rinsed it, and, again, contrary to tradition, cased it, same as the speck di carre'. One thing I haven't mentioned previously when dealing with cuts such as this. It is about 60/40 fat/meat percentage. Conventionally, you would consider any given whole muscle would be nearing readiness at the 30% weight loss plateau. However, since this cut contains a freakishly disproportionate amount of fat, you can throw convention out the window. Super high quality fat like this contains about ZERO moisture. That being the case, weight loss does not occur as it would normally. I believe this was removed after 9 weeks at only 25% loss. I had to go strictly by feel with these. Not the fat cap either, just the lean. Again, I am happy with the fact that I cased this. I really don't think this could have turned out any tastier.