Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Lamb Prosciuto

Lamb Prosciutto using


When you think about Prosciutto first thing I think of is Treif.  But having thought about this for some time why can't I make Prosciutto from Lamb.  Some Charcuterie experts have already done it thank goodness.  I searched all over the net and have consulted many books on charcuterie and came across several great blogs.  I am using the expertise and recipe from Cured meats to make this Prosciutto Gamba Agnello. 

I purchased the leg of lamb from Costco. 

 This is the outside of the leg and looks pretty good.  Not much fat means very little trimming.

 This is the inside the pretty little leg of Lamb.  I have come across many mangled boneless leg of lambs and will admit I got lucky here.  It will be much easier to roll it up and tie it.   

Note 1: The weight of meat plus fat is 100%. All ingredients to be added are expressed as a percentage of the weight of meat plus fat. Percentages can be used to standardize recipes regardless of batch size.  All weights are metric. 

Note 2: No weights are given because the weights of meats vary. Everything is a percentage of the meats weight after trimming. Example- Meat weight 2393 grams and we want to find out the amount of salt we need in grams- 2393 X 3.5%=83.755 or 2392/100 X 3.5 =83.755 grams. 

Lamb Prosciutto
IngredientQuantity(g)% of Meat
Lamb leg2100N/A
White sugar633
Black pepper321.5
Cure #25.250.25
Fresh rosemary211
Garlic powder60.3

I used a large plastic container that can fit the meat. I applied the curing salts and spices to the leg ensuring I get every nook & cranny covered. Applying the cure in a container insures that all of the cure ends up on the leg instead of the counter.  

This hunk of meat will stay in the refrigerator for 15-21 days, massaging and flipping it everyday. 

After the cure time is up I will remove from refrigerator, rinse the leg well, roll it up, tie it very tight making sure I leave no air-pockets (bacteria can grown in air-pockets)than place in a UMAI charcuterie dry age bag.

Ok it's been 14 days and I am anxious to get this Lamb onto the next phase. 

So I rinsed off the Lamb and now its ready to be tied up.  This is very tricky because you do not want any air-pockets.  Air pocket can cause spoilage because bacteria can grow in the little crevices.  

I decided to use Transglutaminase Activa because it helps bind the meat together.  I know of several charcuterie specialists that use this product.  
Transglutaminase, also called meat glue, is an enzyme that can be used to bind proteins to make uniform portions of fish filet, tenderloins, etc. that cook evenly, look good and reduce waste. Transglutaminase can also be used for creative applications in modernist cuisine such as making shrimp noodles, binding chicken skin to scallops or even making checkerboards with different types of fish.  How can you do such a thing? Simply apply some transglutaminase on each side of the protein to bind, press the sides together and let it rest refrigerated for a few hours.
Transglutaminase ‘meat glue’ was introduced into the modernist kitchen by Heston Blumenthal and is currently being used by some of the world best chefs such as Wylie Dufresne to:
- Make uniform portions of fish filet, tenderloins, etc that cook evenly, look good, and reduce waste.

Demonstrating butcher knot

Meat placed and in a Umai Charcuterie Dry age bag  The Lamb Proscuitto will stay in bag until it loses about 30% of its weight. Currently the Lamb weighs 2150 g and will need to lose 30% or 645 g for a weight in at 1505 g. 

Lamb sitting upper right in drying chamber with fan circulating the air. 
After 3 week of Dry-curing the Lamb has lost about 15% of its weight.  It started out at 2150 g and needs to lose 645 g to weigh in at 1505 g.  Getting close!!

18% loss in weight.

"Mary had a little Lamb?  That's right "HAD" is used in past tense. Mary no longer has a Lamb. In fact she is dragging the Lamb to the butcher."  Vegans beware I love meat!!!!

"Mary had a little lamb
She ate it with mint jelly
And everywhere that Mary went
The lamb in her belly was sure to go"

Finito Agnello Prosciutto รจ Sorprendente means I finished my Lamb Prosciutto and it's Amazing. The genesis of this Lamb can be found here titled Charcuterie Lamb Prosciutto. 

A special thanks to Jason Molinari of cured meats blog for sharing his recipe!!! 

After 14 days of curing and 75 days of drying the Lamb was done.  It had lost 30.5% of its weight. Original weight was 2150 grams and its final weight was 1496 grams.

Now on to the tasting profile.  

First let me say you have 
to be a Lamb Lover to like
this. The curing process really intensifies the flavor so if you are so so on Lamb I would give it a pass.  I have read some blogs that say that Lamb Prosciutto is gamey. I would have to respectfully disagree.  

Lamb Prosciutto is Bold in flavor but it is certainly not gamey.  Because of the perfect ratio of herbs/spices there is a perfect balance.  The texture surprised me.  I did not expect the prosciutto to be so smooth and silky becaused it was rolled and tied.  Inaddition, as the lamb pressed against my taste buds it was surprisingly delicate. Very hard to describe with words.  
Nothing stands out as over powering except for the very bold Lamb flavor.  

Would I make it again....YES!!!! 

Would I change anything....NO!!!!!!

I wanted to give you a review of a product I used to bind the meat together. Before Tying, I used a called Transglutaminase Activa . 

 I used  Transglutaminase Activa because it helps create a glue like substance that binds the meat together. I just loved this product.  It created a perfect fused symmetrical shape that allowed me to slice it perfectly and it did not fall apart.  I attribute the smoothness and silky to this product. You would never know this was a rolled up piece of meat. Absolutely amazing.  

Vacuumed sealed with wax paper separating each slice. 

Lamb Prosciutto & Blue Cheese Cream sauce