World Chefs: Jamie Bissonnette shares tips on making cured meats

Tue Sep 2, 2014 1:54pm EDT
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By Richard Leong

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Making sausages, pates and cured meats at home can be tricky, but American chef Jamie Bissonnette in his debut book, "The New Charcuterie Cookbook," shows their flavors are worth the time and effort.

Salumi, chorizos and other cured meats are fixtures at Bissonnette's three popular restaurants in Boston and New York.

In May, he won a James Beard award as best U.S. Northeast chef for his casual Italian restaurant Coppa in Boston. He also co-owns Spanish tapas-inspired Toro in Boston and another Toro in New York.

Bissonnette, 37, a former vegetarian who was born in Connecticut, spoke to Reuters about the book, which will be published later this month, and tips for making cured meats at home.

Q: Why did you write this book?

A: One of the favorite things is to see what I could do at the restaurant and make them easier to do at home. I have friends who are tattoo artists and musicians and they said, “I want to do what you do and make what you make and know how to do it.” The key is to just take a recipe and have fun with it.

Q: What is the essential equipment you need?

A: You want to have a good meat grinder, one with a sharp blade, not just one where you shove meat through a hole. ... With the recipes in the book, you could get by with a lot with what you have at home. What people are finding is that you could have a butcher grind the meat for you.   Continued...

American chef Jamie Bissonnette is seen in New York in this April 23, 2012 handout photo provided by Baltz & Company Inc.   REUTERS/ Noah Fecks/Baltz&Co Inc/Handout via Reuters