Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"Acadian Bacon"??? - What is Wrong With Me?

When I started this blog, I intended to chronicle my forays into pork preparation and preservation. Before long, I realized that I was preparing (and preserving) the same dishes over and over. Lonzino is absolutely amazing, but one I've documented how I make it, does anyone really want to see it again and again? I think not. Furthermore, much of my work was recreating the work of Michael Ruhlman and Jason Molinari. Why read my work when you can read theirs? This led to a fairly long hiatus in posting. It's not that I lost interest in pork (or other meat) projects. I needed to make it interesting to read about. The good news is that I am back at it. If you've read me all along, you know that I am interested in barbeque, sausagemaking, meat curing, and basically anything that involves taking "long-cut" to preparing food. I really should join the Slow Food movement.

So among my recent projects was a random idea that hit me one day. I thought it would be cool to take a pork loin and cure it in the style of Canadian Bacon but, instead of using pickling spices, why not give it a Louisiana flavor profile like Tasso?
Pictured to the right is a half of a pork loin bathing in a brine of kosher salt, Cure #1, sugar, cane syrup, garlic, chili, cayenne, mustard seed, and bay leaves. This bath lasted 3 days and then the loin was treated with a crusting of garlic, cayenne, chili, and salt before being heavily smoked over hickory.

I am not posting the recipe yet because it needs some work. This final product was absolutely delicious, but it needs some work. It had the look and feel of high-end deli meat. I was looking for a denser, pinker cured effect. I think it may need more time in the bath. I am going to do some research and try again. I will post the recipe when I get it the way I want it. In the meantime, I am "stuck" eating all of this smoky goodness. Oh, well. I guess there are worse punishments for "failure".



Happy Grilling Guy said...

I think you are on the right track. I would let it cure for at least a week. Great ideas, I look forward to the follow up post.

David said...

I am going to try again soon. I want to strengthen the cure. I may even try the dry-salting method. I can picture the result I want in my head, I just need to figure out how to get there.


Happy Grilling Guy said...

After I read your post I stuck a pork loin in cure for fun. Ruhlman basic cure + maple syrup. I'm going to let it cure for nine days then smoke to 150F. Not as much "kick" as yours. I'll let you know if nine days is long enough.