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Thread: More Pork

  1. #1
    daveb's Avatar
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    More Pork

    I've been "volunteered" to make pork belly three times in February. Recently found a local source for "Duroc" a heritage breed for 3.99/lb. Same source has what he terms a "plain white pork" belly for 1.99/lb. Can anyone tell me what I can expect the difference to be if I drop the coin on the Duroc? TIA.
    Dave
    Older and wider.

  2. #2
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    Fresh high quality pork has more porkiness and a hint of sweetness. The biggest improvement is in the juices. Also a smoother texture. Once you try the good stuff you'll never go back.

  3. #3
    Senior Member wellminded1's Avatar
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    The difference between good pork and utility pork is unreal. Nice clean tasting fat , that is crystal clear and a beautiful texture. Just try a lb of the duroc if you want to test it.

  4. #4
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    Duroc for 2.99 a pd is a great price. Can you pass the cost along to whomever volunteered you?

  5. #5
    Senior Member 9mmbhp's Avatar
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    Heritage pork bellies are likely to have a much thicker layer of subcutaneous fat and better marbling.

    Some of this is due to how they're raised (organic, pastured, etc.), what they eat and when they're harvested (usually a few months older than 'commercial' hogs) but genetics/breeding play a part too.

    The Mangalista breed is bred specifically for lard and they have incredibly thick fat layers. Some info/pictures here and can be purchased here. They used to have full and half bellies for sale but that seems to have gone away.

    Info on other commonly available hertitage breeds: http://www.heritagefoodsusa.com/farmers.php#1

    This book got me into luxury heritage pork: Pig Perfect.
    Anthony

  6. #6
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    is there any difference in how the pig is treated while alive (besides diet)? Also is the slaughtering different?

  7. #7
    Senior Member 9mmbhp's Avatar
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    Anything that can be done to reduce stress on the animal will result in higher quality product. To that end some hog farmers strive to create the most natural habitat possible. The chapter in Pig Perfect covering the hogs used to make Iberico hams was quite interesting: they mostly run free in oak forests and fatten up on the acorns. Some farmers in the mid-western US are doing the same. Once nice benefit of acorn (or peanut) finished hogs is the resulting higher proportion of monounsaturated vs saturated fats.
    Anthony

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by 9mmbhp View Post
    Anything that can be done to reduce stress on the animal will result in higher quality product. To that end some hog farmers strive to create the most natural habitat possible. The chapter in Pig Perfect covering the hogs used to make Iberico hams was quite interesting: they mostly run free in oak forests and fatten up on the acorns. Some farmers in the mid-western US are doing the same. Once nice benefit of acorn (or peanut) finished hogs is the resulting higher proportion of monounsaturated vs saturated fats.
    I watched a show on this. The farmer was loving his hogs like dogs.
    They're very smart animals, it makes sense.

  9. #9
    Senior Member 9mmbhp's Avatar
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    Mangalitsa porn from Sausage Debauchery featuring one 18# belly cut into 4 pieces.

    One for bacon (applewood smoked):


    the others for pancetta tessa, three different cures:


    Lots of other impressive cured pork at the blog.
    Anthony

  10. #10
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    I wish I could find some Duroc for that price. All the local farms I have found want at least $6. Heritage is the way to go, I have to special order most I get though, it's awesome.

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