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From Land to Table; Austin-Area Artisanal Butchery and Sausage Making

November 21, 2010

Charcuterie: …from chair ‘flesh’ and cuit ‘cooked’) is the branch of cooking devoted to prepared meat products such as bacon, ham, sausage, terrines, galantines, pâtés, and confit, primarily from pork. Charcuterie is part of the garde manger chef‘s repertoire. Originally intended as a way to preserve meats before the advent of refrigeration, they are prepared today for their flavors derived from the preservation processes…

Physical Culture involves the continued betterment of many aspects of health, one of those aspects being how one properly nourishes the body, and what better way to nourish the body than by knowing exactly where the body’s fuel came from, how it was prepared, and what ingredients went into its making.  As proponents of this line of thinking — and of the slow-food movement, writ large — Michelle and I recently attended an Artisanal Butchery and Sausage-Making workshop put on by the fine folks of  the Austin’s finest charcuterists, the Kocureck Family Artisanal Charcuterie.

Larry and Lee Ann Kocureck are artists in every sense of the word, and I’d highly, highly recommend a sampling of their wares.  And if you get a chance, do attend one of their classes and/or events — you won’t be disappointed — either with the fine food, or with the engaging personalities of these two.  Fine, fine people indeed!  These folks love what they do, and that love permeates every bite of their finely-crafted products.

Following the butchery, chef Larry instructs on the finer points of venison stock prep:

don’tcha wish this was scratch-n-sniff?
Michelle and others practice the art of making fine sausage under chef Larry’s tutelage
The post-event buffet. Duck bacon, “Cheek to Cheek”, English Brawn, Beef Kielbasa, Roasted Pumpkin & Apple Chicken Sausage, pate. The Kochurek’s don’t know how to make anything less than spectacular.

In health,

Keith

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