Nowadays I find myself finally reading Timothy Snyder’s “Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin.” In the chapter on the Ukrainian Holodomor – if you don’t know what it is, google before reading further – Snyder describes the horrors of this artificially created famine with contrast to the lives of the “party elites” who got their food in “special stores.” Yet, there was a motivation to keep the diet of these communist bosses in check: “If they grew too fat, however, they had to beware the roving “sausage makers,” especially at night.”
Oh…these refined traditions of Ukrainian masters of charcuterie…
Comrade Leplevskii sausage, anyone! It has a nice touch of garlic with subtle notes of Bolshevik cultures and Stalinist mold!
Now, to stop you from puking, I shall proceed to my current project, Deer in Caraway.
It was indeed a deer, my friends, and a relatively young one.
To balance its leanness, to 4540 gr. of deer I’ve added 576 gr. of mangalitsa fat. Besides 2.55% sea salt and 0.25% cure #2, the deer meat received 0.2% coarsely grounded BP , 0.5 also coarsely grounded caraway seeds, 0.3% dextrose, and 0.1% wild imported (Italian, of course) fennel pollen. Plus, a generous amount of W.L. Weller 12 y.o. bourbon went there as an act of the feast for the fallen deer. On the next day the meat went through 5mm plate and was added hand-cut mangalitsa fat. After adding F-LC, I’ve staffed everything into beef middles. Three days of fermentation and six weeks of dry-curing in the “chamber,” Deer in Caraway was ready. If you worked with deer meat, you know how much liquid it can absorb due to its leanness; hence, I’ve added more water with cultures than I should. For this reason, the total weight loss came to 49%, but felt like 40%.
Here comes the most interesting part. For me, this is the best deer sausage I’ve ever made. Everyone in my family disagrees. That means – I have them all to myself. And,for once, I do not object…