Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Pork Butt Trilogy - Video Recipes

Allow me to sing the praises of Pork Butt. Any cut of meat with a lot of marbling attached to a club-sized center bone and wrapped in thick skin is going to make a soul-satisfying dish. But you need to slow cook it. Fortunately you can walk away and go about your business once it's underway.

And the reward is the tenderest and most succulent bites of meat you can ever have. Slow cooked pork takes on complex spice characteristics, sweet or tart fruit juice flavors, and pungent herb combinations.

Every culture that is introduced to pork makes it their own. And in The 99 Cent Chef's latest swine series, Latin, Italian, and good old Southern Americana cooking make an appearance in this Pork Butt Trilogy of stop motion videos.

Next to chicken, Pork Butt, or Pork Shoulder, is cheap enough for this miserly cook. I get mine when it's on sale at my local Latin market -- anywhere from 77 cents to 98 cent per pound. Even when not on sale, it's usually no more than two dollars per pound.Calling Pork Shoulder a Pork Butt is falling out of fashion, but as long as the name gets a smile I'm sticking with Pork Butt.

These cuts of pork are large, usually in the 5 to 9 pound range. And one large Pork Butt will easily feed a party of twelve. For two of my recipes I break the Pork Butt down, slicing off the skin and cutting off the meat from the bone. In both cases the skin is cooked: crunchy Chiccarones, (blistered fried pork skin,) and crispy, brittle roasted pig skin.

I didn't notice what I had until this Pork Butt series was almost finished. In March I made a Mexican Carnitas video featuring Pork Butt, then during August I slow roasted an Italian Porchetta, followed, a couple of weeks later, by smoky  BBQ Pulled Pork -- all shot as stop motion animation. It's a unique video series I know you will find entertaining.

Part one of my Pork Butt Trilogy is street food done Latin-style. Carnitas Tacos are my go-to selection when on a midnight taco truck run. You can read all about my Mexican Carnitas recipe by clicking here. Carnitas is pork that's slow cooked in orange juice, Mexican cola, oregano, garlic and a few other spices. My Carnitas blogpost if filled with yummy photos and clear step-by-step instructions to easily and cheaply make enough Carnitas for 20 tacos. Watch the video below to see what I mean.

Part two of my Pork Butt Trilogy is a Southern culinary classic, BBQ Pulled Pork. Maybe my favorite of this series? Well at least for now, as my wife has be requesting it the most. We both spent time in the South, so Pulled Pork can easily become part of your DNA. My video recipe shortens the smoking time, but the flavor is 90% there -- experts can tell the difference, but once you take a bite of lightly smoked BBQ Pulled Pork hot off the grill, you'll still be put into a protein coma.

My BBQ Pulled Pork video post is almost ready -- here's a video trailer to wet your appetite.

The 3rd video of my Pork Butt Trilogy is Italian Porchetta. Wrapped in pork skin and slow roasted, Porchetta is intensely pungent -- perfumed with fennel, sage and rosemary. It's all about herbs for this dinner table centerpiece. The stop motion video is shot, now all I have to do is edit it together and get the photo recipe instructions laid out.

Coming soon is the full video and recipe post for BBQ Pulled Pork. So do check back for more of my Pork Butt Trilogy.

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