Sunday, September 28, 2008

Fennel and Cocoa Lonzino


The great thing about coming from a progressive cooking background is that you look at things in different dimensions. My last chef and mentor taught me to look at things in a different light and to always think outside the box. An ingredient wasn't just an ingredient it was more of a playground of endless possibilities. Whether it was a technique, textural contrast or a flavor combination anything was fair game. So when i initially started curing this pork loin, i was thinking traditional lonzino because I have never actually made it despite its simplicity compared to a lot of charcuterie i've made. I wasn't sure whether i was going to hang it o'natural or spice it up with cayenne and paprika. But, I already had cappicollo smothered in that spice mixture so i did not want to duplicate flavors. So, as i was rinsing the cure off after 12 days or so of curing, it reminded me of a suckling pig roast we used to rub in fennel and cocoa nibs amongst other things. Had it been my chef in my shoes, i'm sure he would have had that same moment of clarity and redirect from his initial route. So i toasted off the fennel, ground it, added about the same amount of dutched cocoa, a bit of black pepper, and some corn syrup solids and rubbed it in. I'n excited to taste the finished product. I'm hoping that it will be a nice mixture of floral grassiness from the fennel mingling well with the sweetness of the cocoa. 

Basic Lonzino Cure
3500g pork loin
125g salt
38g sugar
11.4g instacure #2
11.4g black pepper, ground


2 comments:

Jasonmolinari said...

That looks really interesting, thanks for the inspiration. Next time i make a lonzino i may give this a try.

Matthew said...

try lonzino with a bresaola cure it has a real depth of flavor, I used Hugh-Fearnley Whittingsall's recipe with a bit less salt