Lars Hinnerskov Eriksen is a lover of all things swine. And that’s why we have given him his own column on the subject.
By Lars Hinnerskov Eriksen
It ain’t always easy being a pig. No animal in our food chain stirs up quite the same amount of vitriol and anger on an emotional and symbolic scale, whether it be religion, politics, linguistics or 90s LA hip-hop culture.
But while there are many people out there, like Quentin Tarantino’s Jules Winnfield, who ‘don’t dig on swine’, pork elicits an unparalleled joy and appreciation from its purveyors and enthusiasts.
The author of this column is one of these merry addicts who is indebted to the unctuous (surely this word was invented with the pig in mind) fatty glory of pork meat.
Each week – or when times allow it – I’ll post a recipe, tribute, feature or poem that explores the wonderful world of pork; from the treatment on the farm to the restaurant kitchen, from kitsch culture to people who are, er… well, pigs.
Being a Dane living in Copenhagen pork is a bit of a nobrainer. It not only nourished me tremendously as a kid, but also seems to be the economic and cultural foundation upon which this nation is built. One of my earliest memories of feeling happiness and appreciation for food was Sunday lunches with the family, eating pork roast, crackling, brown gravy and pickled cucumber, while listening to the innocuous and soothing sounds of the radio’s hit parade.
Many years later when I moved to London I would experience a similar culinary ecstasy when I first tasted Fergus Henderson’s porktastic nose to tail menu at St. John. So, to finish off this inaugural Pig of the Week we’ll give the final word to Fergus and his glorious recipe for warm pig’s head – one of the most beautiful bits of recipe writing I’ve read:
“The flesh from a pig’s head is flavoursome and tender. Consider, its cheeks have just the right amount of exercise and are covered in just the right enriching layer of fat to ensure succulent cooking results, and the nozzle has the lipsticking quality of not being quite flesh not quite fat, the perfect foil to the crunch of the crispy ear.”