Wednesday, February 23, 2011


I've recently joined a group of fellow bloggers who have embraced a concept created by Mrs. Wheelbarrow (Cathy) and The Yummy Mummy (Kim), it has grown from an idea to get fellow bloggers to try their hand at homemade charcuterie to a group of bloggers nearing 300 total (the list of them is here) all wanting to try it out and share their experiences on their various blogs. The daily banter can be found on Twitter using the hash tag #charcutepalooza

so here we go.

I need to catch up, so I'll be doing duck proscuitto next week, but first my buddy Morgan from Tails and Trotters has a delivery for me of 10lbs of hazlenut finished belly ( for bacon and pancetta ) 5lbs of ground pork meat and belly ( for Salume ).  I also have a 10lb pork loin in the fridge that needs to be cured tonight for my next Lonzino Da Diavalo.  The first two turned out great and since it's very lean, it's something we can eat often without guilt.

Thanks to Darrin of Low on the Hog for the blatant plagairism regarding the Charcutapalooza.

On  a Personal Note, I'm leaving Kaiser Permanente after almost 4 years and have joined a new company that provides lab automation and services to the Healthcare industry, so I get to try a new position leading a high profile PMO while still doing good things in Healthcare.   I'll be travelling a bit, but for the most part I'm hoping to be able to spend more time with my family and my horde of cured meats.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Salame Toscano - Tasting Notes

So here we are:  A watershed moment for the Portland Charcuterie Project.

Our first Salame.   It's a thing of beauty, and tastes great.

As you may recall from our last post, these puppies fermented for 2 days in my ghetto fermenter ( aka "tupperware container in my oven"), then hung in the Mancave for 18 days.

Check them out:  I didn't actually weigh them, but it feels like they've lost about 30-35% of their weight and are very solid.   Beautiful fiore mold on the outside ( I cultured my own mold from a salami purchased at Trader Joe's ).   The first ones are what I'm calling "chubbers" as they were the results of splits in the middles which was caused when I was squeezing the air out of them.  I just shortened them and tied them off ).

Look at the beautiful color, great binding, and gorgeous fat distribution ( no smearing here ).

I couldn't be happier with my first attempt, and am looking forward to cutting down one of the full size salume this weekend.
Chalk this  up as a win for the PCP.   Next up, Fennel Salume.

I also want to thank my friends for a great bday weekend up at Mt. Hood.
Who said 41 was old?

ps.. no bacon chocolate cake this year.. but Stephen and I were able to celebrate our bdays ( me 41, him 40 ) in style with a monster chocolate donut from Sesame Donuts.  We ate that thing for three days!.

Stay tuned for our next posts.. I'm just about ready to bottle my Nocino.