Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Colonial American Pork products

We love our pork here in North Carolina, and the state’s unofficial motto is:

“North Carolina: More hogs than people”.

We rednecks are descendents of the British/Scotch/Irish, and foods like Haggis have never really disappeared from our tables.

When we butcher a pig we use everything but the squeal, and the traditional ways of dressing a pig have not changed much in centuries.

Intestines are stripped of pig poop for use a sausage casings, the blood is rendered, and the pig face, once stripped of the delectable cheeks and jowls, is boiled up as headcheese.

Every part of the pig is used

Some traditional pork curing dates back to pre-colonial days, back to the original British/Scottish techniques of our redneck ancestors, with ancient names like Tom Thumb and Dan Doodle:

- Dan Doodle: Most link sausage is stuffed into the small intestine, but “Dan Doodle” is sausage that is stuffed into the large intestine, right after you flush-out the pig crap. It’s sort of a sausage-chitlins mix.

- Tom Thumb: A Tom Thumb may be the same as a Dan Doodle, but it is described as homemade sausage, using pork shoulder, sage, red pepper, all heavily salted and stuffed into a hog’s stomach. Tom Thumb can keep at room temperature for years. “Tom Thumb” is usually either smoked or dry-cured and only available in Virginia or the Carolinas, and then, it’s only found in small country stores.

Tom Thumbs can stay edible at room temperature for years

The circumference of a Dan Doodle is the exact same as pig feces

See here for more details on authentic pork curing in North Carolina.