Hog jowls bathed in hickory smoke for a week or two were much prized in his wife Nellie Sullivan’s kitchen, and if someone would’ve offered her a rasher of guanciale she would’ve politely declined.
A lot of effort and care went into the Sullivan family’s production of Duroc hogs, and omitting the hickory smoke in their cured meat would not have went over well.
I’ve cured thousands of pounds of heritage pork over the past few years but this marks the first time I’ve ever made guanciale.
A recipe for dry cured guanciale aka cured pork jowl
10.8 lbs (4898 grams) Berkshire or other good breed hog jowls
12.23 grams Sodium Nitrite (.42 ounces) Quick Cure
86.5 grams Salt, kosher (3.05 ounces)
* Thoroughly combine salt and sodium nitrite
* Sprinkle over jowls (be thorough)
* Place jowls on perforated pan or wire grid in fridge
* Make sure there’s a pan beneath the jowls to catch the liquid that will be drawn out by the
* Every 24 hours flip jowls over
* Do this for 12 days
* Rinse cure off jowls with cold water (be thorough)
* Return to fridge, place on wire grid or perforated pan, allow to dry overnight
* Slice a filet off one of the jowls and fry it in a pan to test salinity