Ham

I am really relieved that when we butchered we decided, by minimising the risk and maximising on the reward, we would remove the 3 muscles in the legs and cure them separately.

By doing so we were able to trial a few different styles of cures – one of them wet brine, some others dry, some with fresh herbs (rosemary and juniper) others without anything else except the salt.

The first hams to be ready were the Fruit-fed Mangalitza leg muscles.

The two muscles that were ready were the topside that was cured in juniper and rosemary, and the silverside that was cured and then rolled in black pepper. The topside, being the less fatty muscles of the two had a deep almost purple colour, and had a heady fragrance of the herbs.

The silverside had the added benefit of the fat, and this gave a rich flavour of the meat, which was also helped balance with the pepper.

Now that the rest of the muscles and lardo would have been curing for an additional few weeks over the christmas period, we will have the rest to sample this January. And this means we will be setting up shop in a few markets in London very soon.

Castellano’s All Things Pig Dinner 2011

How fortuitous that the weekend of our Pig Adventure also coincided with Castellano’s All Things Pig Dinner in Bristol.

Also very lucky was that our Pig weekend also happened to be in and around the West Country, so an adventure up to Bristol – a very nice detour to make – wasn’t too far a trip.  Continue reading