Friday, January 8, 2016
Recipes without Measure
As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.
It will be a month after the event that you read this, but this is about making food out of nothing. The problem is peasant food is something which is now expensive. Things like sardines are now gourmet prices. The poor just do not have a morsel any more.
The Germans were real gourmets when it came to ground meats or pudding as they were termed. It was a great pastime of talking puddings hung in the chimney......the smoking preserved the sausages.
One of the things I was raised upon was a food my Grandparents called in their understanding of German a slang of Gritvoosh. As near as I can discern this is Grist Wurst, or a ground meat, as that is what it is.
People in order to survive ate everything and stretched what they had. This German pudding was I believe in the original form locally on the west German coasts, a product of hog's head, tongue, liver and heart. The scraps which no one really wanted to eat, but you had to eat it, to survive, so one had to turn it into something which tasted not like strong dark meat or liver.
For this, we had year old pork roasts.........4 of them and about a pint of hog liver.
I give the basics of this as there is not a measure for this, but just a sort of putting it together.
You start out boiling the meat and liver, until tender. I can still see clearly in being age 3 of my Mom boiling this huge pig head on the stove, with steam rolling up and her carving jowls off of it and whatever meat scraps were there.
After the meat is falling apart, you use a meat grinder to turn it into ground meat.
You save the water or now broth it was boiled in, and add the ground meat to form a liquid meat paste.
To this you add about 4 teaspoons of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper.
This is where it is different from German Pennsylvania scrapple as there is not extra spices in this nor corn meal as the thickener.
What the Germans used was oatmeal and what you want as you had about half a box of this meal, is to make this like a thick oatmeal as it forms a thick paste.
You pour this into big baking pans to cool, cut into cake size pieces to freeze and then after thawing, fry it into a thin patty well browned.
The thing in this is it is odd, but this is better with the scraps and better if it does have lard in it, because the hog lard enhances it, and if fried in hog lard this turns into this deep brown color which is crispy. You eat this on buttered toast.
This sits like a rock in your stomach and it is food that stays with you. It is a food designed to get a half of days hard work out of you.
It is hard to get pork liver now.......have no idea what they are doing with that thing which no one really wants, but it is like French cooking all being peasant food, in what was goose liver which no one wanted is now expensive which only the rich can afford.
This will make......am calculating in my head 96 servings......a great way to stretch four pork roasts, some liver and a half box of oatmeal.....literally triples the food you had, and turns it into something which does not taste of pork, liver or oatmeal.
Pork is a most interesting unclean creature. It's meat is sour and taxing, but put some smoke to it, some salt, some grinding and you end up with something that tastes not like things I care not to eat.
Someday when we have our place, we will have those old pigs full of fat, and we will make our things like George Washington did and Goethe did. Ham, bacon, sausage and gritvoosh.
I would state one thing, that do not eat this fried like sausage patties, or use flours to thicken as the oatemeal gives it more texture and you do not want to be eating mush......is why pork sausage had a coarse grind.
.......and remember THIN, not thick.........deep brown and not black.