Saturday, January 26, 2013

Winter-cured Meat (Step 3: Cooking and Serving)

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So it's now the middle of winter and you are feeling like making a quick and simple meal.  Now is the time for you to enjoy the fruits of your labour.  Take a strip of the winter cured meat out from the refrigerator and prepare it as follows:

  1. Rinse the meat with lukewarm water to wash off some of the excess salt that helped marinate the meat during the preparation phase.
  2. Prepare a rice cooker with rice and water like you would usually when cooking your evening portion of rice.  Place the strips of winter-cured meat flat on the uncooked rice.  Press the on button to cook the rice.  What will happen is that as the rice cooks, the natural oils from the winter-cured meat will infuse the rice with all of its flavours.  I decided to also make some pork sausages at the same time.
  3. Once the rice is fully cooked, you can take out the strips of winter-cured meat.  Slice them into 0.5cm thick slices and serve

Winter cured meat (Step 2: Curing the Meat)

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The next step once the meat has taken on colour of the marinade is to hang the meat and cure it using the cold dry winter air.  Cut or poke a hole through the end of each strip of meat and thread a piece of string through.

Hang the strips of meat outside from the rafters of your deck.  If you live in an apartment you can also hang them off the balcony.  There isn't a specific length of time to hang the meat, but the goal is to dry out the meat.  Having said that, I tend to let the meat cure for at least 7 days (I have even tried 3 weeks on occasions).  On those days where the weather isn't cold enough, you can bring the meat back indoors and place the meat in the oven at a very  low temperature (ie. the oven is just barely on).  The meat will not spoil even if you do leave it outside since there is a high alcohol and sodium content in the meat.  I only do it just in case there may be insects when the winter season is just beginning.

The winter cured meat shown in the picture is nearing the end of the curing process.

Continue to Part 3 of this recipe:
Winter Cured Meat Part 3: Cooking and Serving.html