Hermosa Inn Blog

Tips on Cooking Pork

Jan 14, 2016

Pork Cooking Class_ChefsLast weekend, LON's Executive Chef Jeremy Pacheco and Chef de Cuisine Alejandro Martinez led a class on all things pork for our monthly Art of Cooking Series. Aside from learning where each portion of the pig is (see diagram to the right), each shared various cooking tips and recipes for the class, some of which we included below. Dishes that they made and taught the class included smoked and pulled pork butt, baby back ribs, italian sausage, cured and confit pork belly, roasted pork rack and coffee rub tenderloin. Couldn't make it to class? Join one of our upcoming classes (see the full schedule here) by calling 602.955.7878. Let's start with one of the most popular cuts, the pork belly. Start off by curing it. This is done with a rub (get that recipe here - it's the same one we use on our smoked salmon) consisting of sugar and salt as its base (this is what actually cures the meat) and any additional ingredients, which are just for flavor. From here you can go in a few different directions:
  1. Confit the pork belly (view that recipe here). Afterwards, rinse off the rub and then roast.
  2. Leave rub on if you want to caramelize it but be careful here and decrease the amount of salt used.
For bacon lovers, the chefs recommend curing the pork belly for almost a week, dry and hang for 5-6 days and then smoke it. Slice to make bacon! [caption id="attachment_4359" align="aligncenter" width="372"]Pork Belly Prep_Cooking Class Chef Martinez prepping the pork belly while Chef Pacheco explains how to confit.[/caption] Pork Class_Italian SausageNext up: making Italian sausage. Here, the higher the fat content the better. Grind together both the fat and the meat (about 5lbs) to help emulsify it (use the paddle on your KitchenAid mixer). Note that you'll want your meat cold when grinding - almost freezing - in order to help emulsify. Let that sit for a day. From here, you can either leave as is and use as sausage on a pizza or buy the casing attachment for the KitchenAid to case, and then bake or grill your sausage. [caption id="attachment_4357" align="aligncenter" width="383"]Chef Pacheco continually checks on the tenderloin, ribs and pork shoulder throughout class. Chef Pacheco continually checks on the tenderloin, ribs and pork shoulder throughout class.[/caption] For pork tenderloin, a quick tip: pair with a chimichurri (get our recipe here). And remember to add the salt and vinegar first, as that's what dissolves the salt grains. As for the pork loin, using string to tie the meat together is not just for looks; giving it this uniform shape ensures even cooking. Chef Martinez demonstrates that for class below.

Pork Loin_Cooking Class

Any questions? Leave a comment below for the chefs and we hope to see you in an upcoming class.

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