Sunday, February 20, 2011

Fermented Pork Ribs

While it is easiest to refer to this fantastic looking preparation of fermented pork ribs as Charcuterie, it doesn't feel right because, having seen this compelling example of Thai naem and recognizing how many hundreds of similar preparations of fermented meats are produced by cultures where France has never exerted much influence (or where charcuterie-like dishes predate the appearance of French influence) it feels unnatural, even Chauvinistic, to stamp this with the same name that we use for things like saucisson sec and confit d'oie.

However, I don't know how to describe what this preparation is, in any other way than saying that it is an example of  Asian Charcuterie, so I suppose I'm just going to have to live with sounding like the clueless occidental, Franco-centrist I probably am.

So how cool is this?  pork treated like sauerkraut or kimchi. The pork is salted, mixed with garlic and allowed to ferment for a few days. Given the presence of raw garlic which is known to be a harbinger of Clostridium botulinium  (the cause of botulism) it makes me a little nervous that the cure does not contain nitrite. I think it might be prudent to boil the garlic for 5 minutes  before adding it to the pork, but I may be over-thinking this.


Lou said...

Possibly off topic, but why the fascination with charcuterie? It's so, I don't know, French. Why not the original and far superior salumi? Salami, prosciutto, salsiccia, soppressata, finocchiona, pancetta, lardo, mortadella, but certainly not pepperoni.

Or how about a nice jamón ibérico de bellota, or even jamón serrano. Better than prosciutto in my opinion. Do the French even have anything to compare?

Bob del Grosso said...

I think my post implies that I've asked the same question. I think the only reasonable answer is that the word "Charcuterie" is more comprehensive than other, similar words, and it entered the lexicon of English cooking terms earlier than any of the others. Otherwise it is often an awkward, unwieldy term to use for non-French preparations of fermented,pickled, cured, smoked and air dried meats.

Tags said...

Speaking of saucisson sec, do you know anyone who makes it in the Philly area? If not, do you have a recipe?

Lou said...

Thanks Bob, that makes sense.

Michael Pardus said...

If "charcuterie" implies "preservation of meat" - which it does - then this product fills the bill. I'll start a batch in K1 tomorrow and serve it with sticky rice and water spinach next week. I promise to resist "tweaking", although it sounds an awful lot like pork kimchi to me.... Koreans have been preserving fish and raw poultry in this fashion for centuries - usually with the addition of garlic, daikon, and chilies.

I'll keep you posted.