Yes, a whole pig. And in true EVOO fashion, we will be using every last bit of her.
The most entertaining (for me at least) part of the preparation of the pig is the head cheese. There’s nothing like going into the walk-in to get some more chocolate mousse cakes and being confronted by a massive pig’s head. We use the ears, brains, snout, tongue… pretty much all of the head, and make a pig’s head terrine.
We cure our own meat, and will be using the pig’s cheeks to make Guanciale. When I first started working at EVOO this was a menu item that I was incredibly excited about, as I think Prosciutto is one of the most fantastic creations out there. For those of you who don’t know, Guanciale is a cured meat similar to prosciutto, made out of the cheek of the pig instead of the leg. It is sliced very thinly, and served with EVOO, salt, and bread.
The leg of the pig will become American-style ham, which you will be able to find in a sandwich on our lunch menu. As it has not been created yet I can’t tell you what’s in it, but the second it arrives on the menu I’ll let you know.
Our dinner menu will soon have pork chops and pork tenderloin courtesy of this wonderful pig, and we will also use the meat for the pork Rellenos which are already on the menu.
Peter said he is considering making keilbasa and sausage, but again, I’ll let you know as it happens.
When I say we use every last bit of the pig, I mean everything right down to the skin and feet. The skin will go into our smokey pig skin risotto, which we are currently served in the form of “arancini”, and italian fried rice ball. The risotto is formed into balls, breaded, deep fried, and served with a balsamic-laced tomato coulis, and topped with fresh basil and Parmigiano Reggiano.
The pig’s foot will be made into a pig’s foot succotash, which, once again, I will have more information on once it has been made.
We will use the pig’s liver, some of the meat, and the fat to make a pâté. We wrap our pâté in bacon, making it a pretty comprehensive expression of “pig” in one dish.
I will keep you updated on the status of the pig and all of her parts as they evolve throughout the week.