Okay, in keeping with our “Homestead Helpers” theme, here’s another food source that you can grow in your yard.
There was a bit of outrage at my suggestion yesterday that you should eat “Rabbit Sausages” instead of pork. Apparently, it’s a “Southern Sacrilege” for those of the Gentile persuasion.
I mean, I even got “facetimed” (it’s an iPhone thing) and cussed up one side and down the other. I mean, man… that lady could cuss! She went on and on for ten minutes! She offered to slap me senseless! She offered to come to my house and strangle me with my own intestines!
For crying out loud, Aunt Ruthie! I’m SORRY! Sheesh! It’s not like you didn’t know I’m Jewish! You were at my Bar Mitzvah! LOL!
So, for those offended few who got their chicharrones choked when I boiled Bugs in beer, here’s something for them to measure my own protein production against.
It takes about 10 minutes tops to skin and butcher a rabbit. In a year , you can grow hundreds of pounds of rabbit protein in a pretty small space.
To get that same sausage goodness right from the pig, it’s a little bit larger endeavor. In fact, this is just HALF of the process.
Much of meat’s flavor comes from fat. People are starting to embrace fattier cuts, and cooking with pork lard is making a comeback. With the welcome of full flavored, lard-laden pork, the fat, furry Mangalitsa heritage breed of pig, native to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, is gaining in popularity. Known as the “kobe beef” of the pork world, their meat is marbled and fat stores plentiful. It’s said that their fat is less saturated that normal pig fat, and so tastes lighter and cleaner. Farmers are cross breeding them with other breeds to get a pig that grows fast and has lots of fat. This one that we broke down was cross bred with a Red Waddle, also a chubby breed and a fast grower.
Jointing a pig is different from traditional butchering. If you separate at the joints, you don’t need big knives or saws. Notice, we were able to do most of this pig with small paring knives, though doing it with this method, some of the cuts are less traditional. Every part of this pig has been used, except about 2 cups of glands that were thrown out. The liver and pancreas were saved for pate, the hooves made into “SPAM”, meat scraps into sausage, bones cooked into stock, skin into chicharrones, the ears cooked and sliced, fat rendered down into lard and the head will become pozole. Keep in mind, there are only two tenderloins on a pig, and not that many pork chops-often, so in our traditional food chains, many lesser-valued parts of the pig get thrown out. So eating the whole pig will require more creativity and an adventurous spirit. But it’s a sustainable way to reduce food waste in our system and stretch your pork-laden pleasure.
(After watching all of that, I’m liking rabbit stew more and more. MUCH less work! Okay, you do get bacon, and pork chops and ribs and roasts for “pulling” in BBQ heaven, but…)
Now, I gotta go call Verison about changing my phone number before Aunt Ruthie see this…
Until next time!