Sunday, April 2, 2017

Pancetta 2

Who doesn´t like some tasty Bacon ? I do for sure.
Pancetta is the cold cured type of Bacon. One of my favorites . 
Smoked Bacon is for sure tasty but Pancetta I think having more nice flavors and no smoke taste sometimes taking over.They are both favorites for sure . Bacon always is .

This was a new Pancetta recipe I had to test. Seemed pretty simple and fast to make.
This was needed:

- A nice piece of pork belly . This was about 3 kg . Cut it in 2 pieces.
- Nitrite salt
- Mixed peppers 3-5 different. Not to hot for me this time..
- Mixed herbs. This time Crushed Juniper, Sage , Garlic, Ginger and Nutmeg .                                   ( Experiment and test what u like )

I removed the skin from the belly this time.A little extra job but it makes it easy to handle when ready .  I always keep it when smoking bacon.
Then I put the 1,5 kg pieces in  plastic bags. Adding about 10% Nitrite salt in each.
A handful mixed pepper and a a few table spoons with herbs. Now I close the plastic bag and start mixing around the salt and herbs with my hands to make sure it covers the entire pork belly.

Now the bags are put in the refrigerator for a few days to make sure the salt, pepper and herb flavors gets in to the meat. The salt also makes sure water gets out from it and the meats gets dryer and firmer and ready to be hanged for some weeks.

After 4-5 days in the refrigerator the meat starts to get ready for the hanging.
You can feel the meat getting smaller and firmer compared from the start.

Now washing off the salt and herbs from the meat with cold fresh water.
Drying it off with a clean towel.
Then covering the meat again with some new fresh pepper and herbs. Same as before.
No salt this time. Use a plastic bag to mix and cover the meat in a simple way.

Now it´s time for the curing.
Hang the meat in the curing room. I have about +20 degrees Celcius , 50% humidity in the room.
Can differ but it works for me though. 
After hanging for 3 weeks it was ready for a first test. Tasted just wonderful. Give it some more time and it will taste even better but gets dryer and more difficult to cut the longer it hangs. You just try what u prefer works for u.
The meat can last for months but never do. Have no idea why ?

Just love this meat !