Specialty Food Magazine

MAY-JUN 2012

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

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Page 66 of 103

FOODS IN FOCUS DISPLAY-WORTHY MEATS Here are some more specialty meats to use at the charcuterie or deli counter. For more products, search the Product Finder at specialtyfood.com. Abraham of North America: Westphalian ham, other specialty meats; abraham-usa.com Busseto Foods: Italian specialty meats including dry salami, pepperoni and pancetta; busseto.com Consorzio del Prosciutto di Parma: Prosciutto di Parma; prosciuttodiparma.com Johnston County Hams: hams, bacons, smoked duck, other specialty meats; countrycuredhams.com Fabrique Delicies: coppa, chorizo, pâtés, mousses, galantines, rillettes, sausages, smoked, dried and cured meats, foie gras; fabriquedelices.com Ham I Am: hickory-smoked meats, bone-in and boneless hams; hamiam.com Maple Leaf Farms: full line of duck products; mapleleaffarms.com Nueske's Applewood Smoked Meats: applewood-smoked specialty meats including bacon, ham, poultry and sausage; nueske.com the more exotic SKUs, such as our Pheasant with Rosemary Pâté, will soon threaten the position of Pâté de Campagne." The Great Nitrate Debate In the quest for healthier, natural products, many consumers express concern over nitrates. "I hear customers ask about nitrates all the time, but the reality is that for anything smoked, hung and not cooked, I believe a small amount is necessary to inhibit mold growth," says Formaggio Kitchen's Biggs, who uses the minimum amount to get her products to come out the way she wants. Cauthen, too, notes that customer inquiries about nitrates have increased, but argues that people don't really understand the role they play. "Do I love nitrates? No. But do I like botulism? Nitrates are a natu- rally occurring element, and we only use trace amounts," she says. Occasionally, Cauthen does make a nitrate-free bacon; most custom- ers, however, don't like the color (without nitrates, it won't stay pink) and the flavor is notably different. "Nitrates are in wine, soil, spinach—they occur naturally in many things we consume," Bailie reminds her patrons at Fatted Calf. Mass-produced, commercial products, however, she notes, may employ higher amounts. "It is common for large-scale, factory- produced charcuterie products to use a lot more preservatives than small suppliers like us; it lengthens shelf life and covers up imper- fections or not-totally-fresh raw ingredients." Fatted Calf receives 60 ❘ SPECIALTY FOOD MAGAZINE ❘ specialtyfood.com La Quercia Prosciutto It took La Quercia's Herb Eckhouse four years of work with Missouri farmers to get the population of Tamworth pig—an endangered breed known for the sweetness of its fat—large enough to start commercially selling raw Tamworth bacon and breed-specific prosciutto. 1,000 pounds of pork each Wednesday; by Sunday all has been pre- pared and sold, and the process starts again with fresh meat. Expect shorter shelf lives from artisanal products: Bailie recommends four days for fresh sausage and two weeks for smoked products. D' Artagnan's nitrate- and preservative-free pâtés and some meats may have a shorter shelf life than some competitors, which Daguin is fine with. "Who wants a meat that will keep for a year?" she contends. "We want to believe our products are so good that 15 days in a refrigerator is all they need." At Red, White & Bleu, James Roth purchased a FoodSaver vacuum-sealing system to give the meats a longer shelf life in his store, while still accommodating customers' desire to sample products. A handful of producers are working with natural substitutes. Fra' Mani eschews synthetic nitrates in favor of celery salt and celery juice, and as a result products must be labeled as "uncured," (continued on p. 94)

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