Friday, July 19, 2013

Dude Food: Jowlenese sauce for pasta

Jowlenese is a take on Bolognese, but made with fresh tomatoes from my terrace and a very quick summer sauce.

I have been enraptured by my pig jowl, but at the same time if you look far to the left of the photo I had some trimmings from steaks that I had prepared for class and I ground them up.

Other than vegetables that went into a big salad this was what I had in the house yesterday.

What could I make but a jowl sauce for pasta?

Jowl sauce for two
2 ounces ground beef
4 ounces ground jowl
1 ground onion
2 large and two small tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
Salt and Red pepper

I cut the jowl into cubes and put it in the food processor and ground it up with the onion. Some of the fat clung to the side, I scraped it out and used all the fat in a ceramic skillet and turned it on low to render the flavor.

When it was done I added the beef in small bits to the fat and onion mix.

The the garlic til it was fragrant and the smell was making me crazy.

I tossed in the chopped tomatoes.

They were still warm from the garden and quickly melted into the sauce, but if you have tomatoes less ripe, just mash them with a fork or a potato masher. The sauce cooks for about 10 minutes giving you time to boil water.

Add salt and pepper to taste and cook 4 to 5 ounces of pasta.

Add the pasta to the sauce to finish cooking and toss in a few handfuls of torn fresh basil.

Nothing more is needed your jowl will fully flavor the dish...and if you don't have jowl use bacon, however keep in mind that bacon will have less flavor so up it to about 6 ounces.

The finished sauce has just enough tomato but it is a jowl and beef sauce and those are the predominant flavors.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Smoked Pig Jowls, the ultimate Dude Food

Smoked Pig Jowls You can order them via this link.

We just had the Food Show here in NY. I was on the hunt for the ultimate Dude Foods and I found several, but nothing beats pig jowls.

Those of you who are older remember Granny on The Beverly Hillbillies talking about greens and jowls. It was not uncommon in the old south to use jowls to season a pot of greens or beans.

In Italy it is the most prized cut of meat  the unsmoked version is called Guanciale and is prized in dishes like Spaghetti Carbonara.

In my opinion Jowciale is more prized.

It really is the ultimate Dude Food.

Just a little bit (with all the fat) can season an entire dish.

Shells and Peas

4 ounces of thinly sliced Pig Jowl
1 lb of fresh shelled peas
1 lb of pasta
4 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons olive oil
Black pepper
Pasta water

Brown your pig jowl in the pan and remove, leaving all the good fat behind.

Saute garlic in leftover oil plus added olive oil, just til fragrant, not brown.

Shell the peas in to a colander and cook the pasta in boiling salted water, when pasta is almost done take out a cup of pasta water. Drain pasta over peas, that is all that is needed to cook them.

Turn pan on high and add pasta and peas to fat, stir back in the jowl and grind with black pepper, taste for salt,  add water of liquid is needed, turn off pan and serve.

This is the simplest of summer pasta dishes, loaded with flavor.

Who knew Granny's pig jowls would some day be a highly prized item?