30 July 2011

Holy Smokes

Rural South in the US displays vast diversity of quality of food on offer. On the one hand the cheapest, most horrid, engineered, factory-extruded not-really-food food is available in abundance. On the other hand, I found a really nice unpasteurised organic cheddar at a regular grocery store. On the third hand, some of the finest fresh produce, fish, game, etc. can be easily and cheaply gotten. Had some freshly caught bluegill the other night. Loads of homegrown tomatoes. And a fantastic hickory-smoked chicken that was organically raised by our relatives here.

Speaking of hickory smoke, we also just finished a successful canadian bacon experiment, using a huge (and cheap, this was not a high-quality piece of meat) pork loin that we brine-cured (with, among other things, bunches of fresh sage and thyme from the garden) and then smoked. Turned out great. Disappeared quickly. Next up: a maple cured and hot-smoked bacon. Procuring the pork belly was harder than I expected, doesn't seem to be a common cut here for some reason, but we got one and it's curing now.

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