Thursday, September 29, 2016

Young Man With A Cleaver

Learning a useful trade:
Basically, what we do is we take the pig and figure out how to best preserve it and create different flavors. I take the raw product and through either curing or smoking preserve the product so that it becomes sellable, as well as altering the flavor to a more desirable, complex flavor background.

Lam: What are some of the challenges of your job?

Larson: When I first started, it was very difficult because I'd never done anything like that. It was tough to get through a pig in one day. Even skinning the pig was challenging. I think that was the biggest struggle was getting my butchery skills to a level to where I could do more interesting and valuable things with the meat. That took a solid four or five months before I was really comfortable breaking down the whole pig, making accurate cuts, being precise, and knowing what I was going to do with it.

Now, the challenge has kind of changed. Recently, it's been more about creativity and understanding more what I can do with the animals: How I can work with Nathaniel to create different products that are more interesting and more useful?

Lam: What do you mean by useful?

Larson: For instance, today we're trying to figure out how to make pork-skin sausage. Traditionally, what we do is we take the pork skin, boil it down, render out the fat, and scrape the skins, then dehydrate them and fry them and they crackle. We'll sell that at Bourrée.
An education can come in many forms...

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