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At independent restaurants around the country, chefs are creating their own sausages, smoking their own bacon and developing their own salami
Jacob Sessoms’ customers were not interested in his $12 charcuterie plate when he sourced it from the best cold cuts and pâtés he could find. But now that he makes everything in-house, it’s a best seller. “It’s a really good way to make money if you do it right,” said Sessoms, co-owner of Table and Tod’s Tasties, two restaurants in Asheville, N.C.
With an increasing number of chefs taking a stab at whole hog butchery, and with local ingredient sourcing continuing to gain in popularity, many restaurant kitchens are making their own sausages, hams and salamis.
So has his “pork butter,” made by taking the trimmings from the back fat of Duroc pork and cooking them sous-vide style with garlic, chiles, rosemary and preserved lemon. Once the mixture is warm and soft, he purées it and serves it on crostini or pizza, “or to sauté anything, like you would duck fat,” he said.
Woodberry Kitchen’s charcuterie program began as an attempt to butcher whole animals, he said. “When you get a whole, entire animal, there’s a lot of stuff that you need to learn how to use,” he said. “Not only is it a fun, exciting thing to do — and dried and cured meats are delicious — but we wanted to create products using pastured, locally raised animals,” he said.