Monday, November 17, 2008
Beer, Pork, Cheese, and Bread
I have been on something of a health kick for the past couple weeks. As I am only a couple of years away from 30 it is fast dawning on me that the 5 or 10 pounds around my midsection will only further entrench itself if I don't do something soon. Because of this I have been, as of late, denying myself the pleasure of some of my favorite food stuffs. Instead of beer I have been trying the whole healthful couple glasses of red wine thing, I have been laying off bread almost entirely, and the cured/salted/smoked/encased pork products that I love so much have been consumed only in scant quantities. It has been going pretty well, except for the whole being miserable and wanting to die thing, and I have shed a couple pounds. So, like any deluded dieter I decided to fall off the wagon and stuff myself with the prohibited goods.
I started with some Schaller and Weber Jagdwurst.
I am a big fan of wurst in all shapes, species, and sizes and Jagdwurst is one of my favorites. It is kind of like grown up baloney, a nice pink, sort of sweet, cooked pork sausage. I like the texture, it is something like a giant frankfurter with bits of ham intermingled. Really quite tasty with just a bit of mustard, also very good breaded and fried a little.
I put the sausage on the plate with a few slices of my homemade Roggenbrot. Not to pat myself on the back, but the roggenbrot is one of the few bread goods that I truly make well. I use some of my own sourdough starter, rye flour, a little King Arthur bread flour, salt, and water. That is it, it is a nice and simple bread that stands up admirably to strong mustardy, sharp cheesey, porky, beery flavors. I also had some nice 13 months aged New York cheddar which I thought would not be out of place.
I think sometimes that a meal like this is my favorite. Good bread, a bit of meat, cheese and some mustard all washed down with a nice beer. It is good and simple old timey food. No complex cooking or recipes, just simple goods derived from the wonders of fermentation, bacteria, and the art of preserving meat.
The beer I was drinking I bought on kind of a lark not expecting it to be that good. I picked up a 6-pack of "Pork Slap Pale Ale".
This stuff pretty much met my low expectations. This is kind of a brew up some piss beer, slap it in a trendy "cheeky" can, and wait for the hipster foodies to shell out 9 bucks a 6-pack thing. It was over carbonated and under hopped and generally pretty mediocre. It kind of made me itch to break out the old brewing tools and start crafting a nice early winter brew. I have been neglecting the brewing arts to a woeful degree during the past couple of years. Time just slips between my fingers, I blame my laziness of the past few weeks primarily on the lack of pork so hopefully I am cured now.