Tonight’s dinner was out of
Arabesque: A Taste of Morocco, Turkey, and Lebanon.
First, a very simple preparation of fresh cod cooked in olive oil, with olive, preserved lemon, lemon juice and parsley.
(Note that I made the preserved lemons as per our old friend Mourad
a month or two back.)
Anyway, the cod:
Very simple, light. A perfect spring meal.
Then, for desert, another recipe from Arabesque: orange pudding with whipped cream and pomegranate molasses (actually, the recipe called for pomegranate seeds, but we couldn’t find them, so we went with plan B).
Solid. B+. Next time I’d add a bit more corn starch to the orange juice / sugar mixture to make it a bit firmer. I’m not aiming for a jello texture, just something a wee bit firmer.
This is one of Jennifer and my favorites.
Do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of Food and Wines’ Best of the Best vol 13. Amazon has it used for 1 cent, plus shipping.
Do it now.
It also doesn’t hurt when you stumble into a sale of tenderloins for $7.99 / lb.
Served with Tarragon Mushrooms from one of my favorite cookbooks, Grillhouse: Gastropub at Home.
After letting the bacon hang in the basement for 24 hours with a fan going ten feet away, to develop a pellicle, I took it out and smoked it in the back yard for a few hours, over some oak chips.
Then I put it in the freezer for an hour to stiffen it up a bit and took it to the deli slicer.
Here’s three bags, each with five wax-paper-wrapped servings of bacon (around 8-10 oz each). We go through around one serving of bacon per week with our normal bacon-and-eggs breakfast, so that’s 15 weeks.
Guess I’ll be buying another pork belly or two in August!
In a conversation with some reactionary friends about weight lifting, Dark Enlightenment tweeted
and Gaelic Norseman replied
It’s been five days, so time to take the panchetta out of the fridge, scrub it under cold running water to get the cure off, blot it dry, and then hang it.
Speaking of dried meats, how are the pepperonis coming along?
Very well, thank you!
Also, the other side of pork, the bacon, is out of the cure and hanging on the squat cage for a day or two to develop a pellicle, at which point it will be smoked.
We’ve got 15 pounds or so of pepperoni curing in the basement, but we’re running low on bacon. And while I’m in a charcutterie / salumi
mood, I decided that I might as well experiment with a new addition to my repertoire.
As I’m not yet harvesting my own pigs, it’s not super easy to lay hands on a full pig leg for country ham or prosciutto, but I called ahead and found that Whole Foods had several full pork bellies on hand.
We stopped in and got two – about 30 pounds of meat.
I told the guy “don’t even open up the sealed plastic – I’ll take them whole. It turns out that if you’re willing to do a little bit of butchering, there are some bonuses – you get the skin (good for making cracklings, or just adding body to stock with all that great collagen), and you also get a full set of ribs…at pork belly prices. Woot!
This is what 15 pounds of pork belly looks like (almost $100!):
Removing the ribs:
Making the panchetta rub:
Rubbing down the panchetta:
Thirty pounds of processed meat. From left to right:
- one pig skin
- 10+ lbs of panchetta with skin attached for hanging
- 10+ lbs of bacon
- baby back ribs
- more baby back ribs
The bacon and panchetta will sit in the fridge for a week or a week and a half, then the bacon will come out and be smoked, and the panchetta will come out and be hung down in the paleo-cave, between the other dried meats and the squat rack.
From the Irish cookbook. Went a bit overboard on the leaks, hence what should be an orange soup is green.
Make sure to wash your leeks thoroughly to avoid a slightly gritty mouth-feel!