Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Lyonnais Producer: Black Pigs from the Bugey


Here in Lyon on the St. Antoine Market on Sundays and at the Producer's Market on Place Carnot on Wednesday evenings, there is a pork producer who sells his version of a figatelli and various sausages ranging from a saucisse à cuire to exquisitely à point saucisson sec for slicing thin and enjoying with l'apéro.

In addition to charcuterie, they supply us with quality pork and lamb at reasonable prices. This meat is so much better than anything you can get from the butcher who sells meat from the wholesale markets, and the price is equivalent. The secret to their success is that these farmers raise their animals traditionally and make their living direct from their product, selling retail only. The quality really comes through.

On their farm, apart from traditionally raised pigs, they have Iberian type black pigs that they allow to roam free in herds. These pigs are nourished by feed but foraging behaviors that are natural to this breed's tradition are honored as well. They munch on wild acorns and chestnuts and roots of various kinds to fatten up for winter in the forest and pasture on the farm, and since they are constantly moving animals, their meat is a deep dark red color, certainly not "the other white meat". Availability of this special type of pork is limited, since they follow traditional cyclical breeding and slaughter practices. We won't see these succulent pork cuts again until late next fall. Sigh. Remind me to show you this meat stand when you come to visit.

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Blogger Kate Hill said...

Aren't we lucky to have all this good meat at hand? the first time i learned that there was seasonality in fresh meat as well as vegetables made me pause. Now I seek it out. Down here, the Gascon Noir is the old 'wild' breed domesticated and favored for charcuterie. I hope this May sees a pair of little black trotters joining the team at Camont.

3:17 PM, March 30, 2010  
Blogger L Vanel said...

I can picture it well, a local Porc Gascon Noir would be such a great addition chez Kate. Hmmm.

3:22 PM, March 30, 2010  
Blogger Unknown said...

This is the way to buy food, including meat. It's possible to find small farms in the U.S. that are putting out product of this quality...I personally know of a few for beef and pork. Anyway, since meat produced this way is a seasonal product, I've been freezing more cuts....While I resisted at first, I find that a frozen, properly thawed cut of good quality meat is still much better than a so-called 'fresh' cut of commercially-produced meat.

3:54 PM, March 30, 2010  
Anonymous Gosia said...

What did you make with these great meat cuts?

4:06 PM, March 30, 2010  
Blogger racheld said...

Just that package of ruby meat in the paper reminds me of the little black pigs called "lot pigs" by an uncle in the hills of Mississippi. The big old sows and shoats of the farm kind lived in the sty, and there WAS no "lot" for the wildish ones---they had free roam of the woods and hillsides, and ate what Uncle P-Bo called "mast."

The meat was always cooked long and slow, for there was still a lingering thought of the perils of wild pork, and my Mammaw's best recipe was with two layers of apples---one in the pan at first, to melt into the sauce, and other little moons added close to the end, to be sweet and tangy and punctuate the richness of the dish.

4:14 PM, March 30, 2010  
Blogger L Vanel said...

Hi Ben, I totally agree with you on the freezing aspect - that's why we have freezers and I don't hesitate to use mine. Thanks for coming by!

Gosia, we made lunch with it! I simply broiled these and seasoned them with salt and pepper. No need to mess with perfection.

Ohh, very good, Rachel.

4:23 PM, March 30, 2010  
Anonymous Kalindi said...

I would love to go to the market with you and learn where these treasures are. There are so many vendors and we don't really know what to look for.

12:03 AM, April 01, 2010  

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