Cured Hocks and Chops

Recipes and techniques using brine.

Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Sun Feb 19, 2017 3:24 pm

So I put in a request at the start of the week to my butcher for four ham hocks and six double cut bone-in pork chops (German gepockelte) My idea is to cure the meat and cold smoke it after I pick it up later today. Now, I need some input (and I just woke up and can't seem to clearly think yet) ... if I was to brine cure everything together, how much meat can I add to the brine before I need to adjust the strength of it? Any suggestions on a good brine to use to accomplish the cure? Only reason I am thinking brine is I could just make one tub and bung all the meat in it together but I am open to other suggestions. I must admit to not being the most experienced with brines as when I do use them it is usually for one piece of meat. So ... any help team?
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Sun Feb 19, 2017 4:12 pm

So a little thought has been put into it ... if I wanted to calculate the brine at 2:1 I would do something like this:

Weigh all the meat. For this purpose lets say it is 1000g to make it easy.

1000g Meat
420.5g Water
50g Kosher Salt
25g Demerara Sugar
4.25g Cure #1

Brine for 10 days. Does this sound right? Any tweaks to add other flavours?
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Sun Feb 19, 2017 6:02 pm

Ok, my head hurts, I hate calculating brines. I think the percentages I calculated would be way too low in Cure #1. I would actually need something closer to 18 grams ... does that sound right?
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Sun Feb 19, 2017 6:44 pm

Now I have started looking at equilibrium brining and my head is going to explode. Maybe I should try that as it seems to be the simplest one and makes sense to me. And sorry for so many posts talking to myself, I obviously have nothing better to do!
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby wheels » Sun Feb 19, 2017 8:52 pm

You can use the calculator on my black ham or cider ham as a calculator for the EQ brines. Just Input (say) the water where the cider should be etc.

HTH

Phil
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby NCPaul » Sun Feb 19, 2017 11:06 pm

I really liked the spicing used in the Pauline ham; it's subtle but comes through in the final product.
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby wheels » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:03 am

ComradeQ. If you have 1kg of meat, the cure that you propose will be great - do not use 18 gm cure #1, it's too much. NCPaul proved this by testing a few years back. To have the spicing of an injected cure, like Pauline's, in an immersion one, I suggest increasing the spices a lot - maybe 5 times?

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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Tue Feb 21, 2017 3:23 pm

Thanks guys! So I got the hocks, had to sit in the fridge for a day but doing up the cure now. The chops did not arrive so I told him to call me when they do. The butcher has called in a really good Mennonite supplier for the pork so I told him I could be patient (Red Tamworths). I also threw in an order for some belly as they are known as the definitive bacon pig. I'm hungry now.
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Fri Feb 24, 2017 2:54 am

One last question ... with the hocks in the brine (I ended up pumping to 10%) I have several days to decide to cold smoke or hot smoke. Most commercial hocks I buy are hot smoked but I'm leaning towards cold smoking. I'm looking to using these for soups, beans, etc to flavour them. Is there a benefit to hot smoking them?
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby DanMcG » Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:23 am

I like to do a long warm smoke (160-180°f ) with hickory. Finish at 150°ish
I'd like to see a pic or two of the Tam's cuts. I hear it's an awesome breed.
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby wheels » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:14 pm

I'm only 25 miles from the town where the Tamworth pig originated.

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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Fri Feb 24, 2017 6:20 pm

DanMcG wrote:I like to do a long warm smoke (160-180°f ) with hickory. Finish at 150°ish
I'd like to see a pic or two of the Tam's cuts. I hear it's an awesome breed.


The hocks are in the brine already and I didn't get a pic of those prior to that. I will get some of everything when they are done. The chops I got look great ...

Image
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby ComradeQ » Fri Feb 24, 2017 7:45 pm

I should have mentioned, I used Pauline's Ham cure for the hocks. Silly me, I steeped the mix and doubled the spices. Once cooled, I strained the spices, injected 10%, and put the rest in a vac bag. Of course, my stupidity I forgot two things ... 1) return the spices back into the brine before sealing the bag and; 2) account for the weight of the bone and subtract it from the cure amounts. I'm sure the spices should still be there since I had doubled the amount before steeping. As for the bone weight, I'm sure it won't kill me but need to remember for next time.

The chops I opted for a dry rub. For those I used another Wheels recipe and opted for the Favourite Bacon recipe. Rubbed and vac packed into the fridge. The chops and hock I will cold smoke together for the first day. That's all the smoke I will give the chops, plan to keep those only cold smoked and cook them when I use them. The hocks I will return to the smoker for a second day and this time I will warm smoke as per DanMcG.
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby NCPaul » Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:13 pm

Beautiful chops! Be careful cooking those babies.
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Re: Cured Hocks and Chops

Postby wheels » Sat Feb 25, 2017 12:18 am

I'm sure that you take your pigs bigger than we do. What weight is one of those beauties?

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