This passion for pigs goes way back. Now living in Tuscany I am blessed to be able to say I really know where the food I eat comes from. These are Cinta Senese Pigs at the Casamonti Farm in Castellina in Chianti.
My friend Ray was part of the movement to save this pigs from extinction. Their fat is similar to olive oil due to their diet. This thick layer of fat cooks more slowly, so I will be interested in seeing how long it takes to make my guanciale with it.
Of course, I could have just bought a guanciale from Ray, as they turn their pigs into prosciutto, salami and guanciale. But I love to try things at least once. Ray is coaching me on his recipe for making it.
|bad foto, but Sandro had my guanciale all ready trimmed and ready for me!|
The Guanciale weighs 1,550 kilos which is about around 3 pounds.
On the left is the salt they sell here in the store to make your own cured meats at home, it is sea salt from Cervia, which is the least salty of the sea salts in Italy and seasoned with black pepper, rosemary and garlic.
On the right is the normal Sicilian sea salt we get at the grocery store. I am not using any "pink salt" as it is not the tradition here. We will see how it turns out.
|this blend is suggested for making pancetta and coppa|
This probably won't be done for the February Charcutepalooza post, for that I will try making bacon as it is not easy to find here and I adore a good BLT!