(Let’s just drop that pesky ’11 or 2011 or whatever.)
Twitter Hashtag: #Charcutepalooza
We’re kicking off the twelve months of meat so aptly named Charcutepalooza by Kim. This is a remarkable opportunity to learn as a group, to share experiences, and to explore far and wide how we approach the elegant “craft of salting, smoking and curing.”
There is little doubt it’s time to think about the meat we eat. How we use the animals raised for consumption. How we treat them. How they are butchered. And how the whole beast is used to feed our families.
Stories of meat tainting and commercially farmed animals in hideous circumstances are far too common. Wouldn’t it be better to celebrate the appropriate, thoughtful consumption of meat with a year long exploration of the age old craft of charcuterie?
Charcutepalooza (say it with us, “shar-coo-ta-pa-loo-za”)
We want to make it easy and fun to participate. If you are in, send me a message using the contact form on this blog. Include your name and your blog address. Everyone participating will be listed (with links) on a page linked to www.charcutepalooza.com.
If you don’t know where to hang meat in your studio apartment, don’t worry. There will be plenty of projects that do not require hanging meat. Duck prosciutto aside, each month’s project will be crafted with a wide range of applications in mind.
We’re using Charcuterie: The Craft of Salting, Smoking, and Curing as our guide. Michael Ruhlman has said he’ll be involved. More on that soon.
Already it looks like an amazing community of talented cooks will be involved. Watch for posts from GlutenFreeGirl and The Chef, Last Nights Dinner and A Dash of Bitters, Heathy Green Kitchen, TasteFood, The Peche, NotDerbyPie and Hedonia, to name just a few.
If you’re not a blogger, you can still participate. Post your experiences on the round-up post in the comment section, and share photos at our Flickr site. Or just read along and watch what happens. I’m hoping for a few good stories.
Hang on to your hats because there is more to come. Punk Domestics wants to run with this, showcasing blog entries from our Charcutepalooza. And Kim and I are brainstorming all sorts of fun and games. More on that later.
For now, let’s get on with it.
- Let’s celebrate the age-old talents and skills of charcuterie with contemporary takes on techniques, flavors and presentation.
- Let’s agree to use humanely raised meat, sourced as close to home as possible.
- Let’s write about our experiences. Not just how the charcuterie is made, but how we use it, serve it, flavor it.
- Buy a copy of ‘Charcuterie: The Craft of Salting, Smoking, and Curing’ by Michael Ruhlman.
- Cook along as often as practical. There’s no obligation.
- Post about your experiences on the 15th of the month.
- Display the Badge, if you are so inclined; here’s how: Copy the following code into a widget on your website:
<a target=”_blank” href=”http://www.mrswheelbarrow.com/2010/12/charcutepalooza-lets-make-meat/”><img src=”http://www.mrswheelbarrow.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/charcutepaloozaSMALL2.jpg”
Right click on the badge to the right and save it then insert on your site and link it to: http://www.mrswheelbarrow.com/2010/12/charcutepalooza-lets-make-meat
Please, let’s not post the charcuterie recipes. However, recipes that use what you’ve made – that’s what we hope you will post. And presentation. And the photos. We know we’re going to love the photos.
How it will work
I’ll post a monthly charcuterie challenge on the 15th of each month. This will kick off the project and offer some tips for success. You’ll have one month to complete your take on the challenge.
Kim will post her take on the monthly challenge on the 15th, also. She’ll be addressing the charcuterie from her never-done-it-before point of view.
We hope our two perspectives will give you plenty of help and information to get on with some meat-making. We’re also hoping to get some expert help at a monthly twitter talk. More on that later.
(January is a special circumstance. We’ll start with Duck Prosciutto, for posting January 15th. That post is coming in a day or two. As soon as I catch my breath.)
We’ll post a round up of links on the 30th of each month. If we can find some sponsorships, maybe we can figure out some contests or giveaway. More on that later.
And each month, Kim will post her experiences, as a newcomer to meat-crafting. I can’t wait to see what she will get up to. Last I heard, she was looking for nightclothes for her duck breasts. No, not kidding.
We’re terrified and thrilled to set off on this project. Can’t wait to see how the charcuterie is served in your homes.
More on that later,
XO Cathy & Kim
Charcutepalooza. The Year of Meat.
Update: Throughout the year, you’ll find all the challenges here.