Friday, April 16, 2010

Pictureless Food-Blogging: Pork Breast

This week Chris brought home a bunch of different-from-usual meat from the Wholesale Club, because they had some good sales going on and he was feeling adventurous.  One cut of meat that he brought home, because he had no idea what it was and it was about $1/package, was a cut of pork called "pork breast."  I did a lot of scratching my head and blinking when he handed it to me.

"So...would it be from near the udders?" I asked.

Google yielded some helpful information, including the news that this is actually a new cut of meat, and that the meat comes from near the shoulder and the ribs (more like "breast bone").  They look like ribs, since the cuts we got were still on the bone.  I didn't find many recipes that called for this cut of pork, and so I took the "moist cooking" suggestion from the pork website, and treated it like a cross between pork shoulder and side ribs.  I put a dry rub on it (the Southern Barbecue Dry Rub from the Joy of Cooking, which contains brown sugar, paprika, chili powder, crushed red pepper, cumin, mace, salt and pepper.)  Then I browned all the pieces in my dutch oven, clamped the lid on the pot and put it in the oven at 350F for between an hour and a half and two hours.  If I'd had more time, I would have cooked it for longer at a lower temperature, because I think that would have made the meat even more tender.

But I turned out nicely.  (Much more nicely than the first attempt, when I just tried to cook them on the skillet.  That was a little too tough, but still tasted wonderful.)  The texture and flavour reminded me of dry ribs, and it went nicely with roasted parsnips and baked potatoes. 

Next time, I'll try outright braising them, and then I'll try marinating and grilling them.  (We have several packages left.)  Maybe I'll braise them with orange juice and soy sauce. 

(Tonight I'm trying the Simply Recipes method for roast beef, using the giant Eye of Round that Chris also found at the Wholesale Club.)


Lynmara said...

I envy your gumption. I think I'll stick to my microwave, though.

restinpeace said...

Just bought some today looking for a good recipe. Slow cooking in the cast iron dutch oven seems to be an excellent idea

Anonymous said...

I just dust them with spices and throw them in a 500 degree oven for 15 minutes. Then I turn the oven off and leave them in there without opening it for an additional 15 minutes. They turn out excellent , nicely carmellized on the outside and tender and juicy inside.