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Charcuterie

  • PASTORAL ANDERSONVILLE & APPELLATION ARE FINALLY HERE!

    Hallå Andersonville!

    After much anticipation we are very excited to announce the opening of our fourth Pastoral retail location and second full-service restaurant, Appellation in Andersonville! We're thrilled to join the community and invite you into this 3,800 square foot space which features the products and menu items you already love, as well as a 75-seat restaurant and wine bar where you can experience them all together.

     

    Appellation - A Wine Bar & Restaurant with a Sense of Place

    daytime inside Dill ricotta gnudi with preserved lemon, beets, hazelnuts, butter and Pantaleo small

    Located inside of the new retail store, Appellation will offer guests a simple but amazing approach to food and wine with a sense of place, in a warm, inviting space. The restaurant’s name and menu inspires guests to appreciate the place of origin for each ingredient and wine pairing, as well as the farmers and producers with whom Pastoral has built great relationships over time. Chef Jesse Williams, a former Pastoral cheesemonger, has crafted an inaugural dinner menu featuring a range of rustic and creative cuisine using high-quality ingredients that highlight the notable cheeses Pastoral has championed for more than 10 years.

    MAILLE MUSTARD NOW AVAILABLE IN THE MIDWEST

    maille mustard tap
    To accent our charcuterie station, we are very excited to feature exclusive White Wine mustard on tap from Maille, which is available in just two American locations outside of Chicago. Sharp, spicy and remarkably fresh, this draft mustard is unlike any you've experienced before. We will also carry several varieties of Maille’s premium jarred mustards, including Blackcurrant, Cognac, Walnut, Lemon & Harissa, as well as a premium Hazelnut oil.

     

    greg & kenWe are looking forward to sharing this new space and exciting retail and restaurant concept with our new neighbors in Andersonville and the city we've called home for over a decade. Please join us for the celebrations, hope to see you there!

    - Ken Miller & Greg O'Neill

  • MEET THE MEAT MAKERS OF THE PASTORAL ARTISAN PRODUCER FESTIVAL!

    Every year, dozens of artisan producers fill the Chicago French Market for the largest FREE tasting event in Chicago - the Artisan Producer Festival . In addition to cheese-makers and mongers from around the world, there will also be producers of beer, wine, accouterments, and one of our favorite categories - charcuterie. Check out the roster of traditional and innovative charcuterie producers from across the country that will be joining us this year!

    CREMINELLI MEATS

    The Creminelli family has been crafting artisan meats since the 1600s. Their legacy lies in their integrity, sourcing locally produced, organic and all natural ingredients, including heritage meats that are raised exclusively on vegetarian feed without the use of antibiotics.  They'll be bringing Milano, Calabrese, Wild Boar and Tartufo salami to the festival for you to sample.

    H. FORMAN & SON

    Smoked Salmon on a board

    Over a century after it was established, H. Forman & Son remains a family concern, the last of the original London smokeries, with Lance Forman, founder Harry Forman’s great grandson, flying the flag for the famous London Cure. Remaining faithful to principles established in 1905 – the freshest salmon, a little salt, just the right amount of oak smoke – he is upholding traditional values and skills that would otherwise have died out long ago. Sample their impeccable side of hand-sliced Scottish Smoked Salmon at the festival.

    SMOKING GOOSE MEATERY

    McQuaid_Pastoral_15

    After a successful career as a chef in several top Chicago restaurants Chris Eley returned home to Indianapolis in 2007 to open up Goose the Market a neighborhood full service butcher and specialty food shop. Then in 2011 he launched Smoking goose – utilizing classical techniques in new and quirky way yielding a truly unique line of artisan charcuterie. Last year, the fine folks from Smoking Goose showed up to the Artisan Producer Festival with a 175 lb. mortadella! This year, they'll be bringing along some of the meats you'll find on our sandwich menu, like Mortadella, Dodge City Salami and the Pig & Fig Terrine, as well as their Stagberry, an elk and mead-soaked blueberry salami, and the Kitchen Sink sausage you'll find on Bar Pastoral's brunch menu. But who knows what else they might have in tow!

    UNDERGROUND MEATS

    Located in the heart of south central Wisconsin, Underground Meats sources the meat for their hand-crafted salami and cured meats from local, small scale, humane operations. The team at Underground Meats is also paving the way for future charcuterie operations, creating an open source handbook for salami producers looking to expand nationally.  We're really excited to add their Summer Sausage to the artisan salami selections you'll find in our charcuterie case - make sure you try some at the festival!

    WEST LOOP SALUMI

    Processed with VSCOcam with hb1 preset

    When West Loop Salumi’s Greg Laketek trained under the famous Massimo Spigaroli in Italy, he brought the old world Italian traditions and recipes back to Chicago with him. West Loop Salumi is Illinois’ first USDA salumeria and they pride themselves on their quality ingredients and recipes. Try their Finocchiona, Pancetta and Chorizo and the Artisan Producer Festival.

  • Pastoral's 5th Annual Artisan Producer Festival!

     

    Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine and the Chicago French Market are proud to announce the 5th Annual Pastoral's Artisan Producer Festival at the Chicago French Market from 11 AM to 3 PM on Saturday, April 25, 2015.

    apf 2014 jasperThis is a FREE tasting and meet-the-maker event featuring producers of artisan cheese, bread, beer, wine, charcuterie, confections, and other food stuffs. Each year we are blown away by the support and enthusiasm of not just the producers that we and the other Chicago French Market vendors are proud to represent, but by the tremendous turn out by you, our loyal and wonderful customers.
    In addition to cheese-makers and mongers from around the world, there will also be producers of beer, wine, and accouterments. You'll meet confectioners, beer and spirit makers from right here in Chicago and around the world. The event will also feature artisan producers featured at Pastoral’s neighboring Chicago French Market vendors.
    CLICK HERE
    to visit our festival event page for a peek at the producers, vendors and stage lineup for the big day! Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to stay up-to-date on festival details as they are announced.
  • Olympic Provisions - Pastoral's Artisan Producer Festival Highlights

    Olympic provisions 2Oregon's first USDA approved salumeria - Olympic Provisions - was established in 2009 by head Salumist Elias Cairo, a first generation Greek American- who watched and learned from his father who made salami at home.

    Elias then kindled his passion for all things salumi, traveling and apprenticing in Europe learning the old world art and craft of salumi; the tenets of which are - everything is made by hand and comes to fruition with patience and time.

    Meet the makers behind Olympic Provisions
    charcuterie and taste their amazing products at Pastoral's 4th Annual Artisan Producer Festival. Can't make it to the festival? Order a Taste of the APF Medley in stores or online and bring home some Olympic Provisions Salami along with a bunch of other tasty artisan treats from producers attending the festival.

    Held every Spring at Chicago's French Market, Pastoral's 4th Annual Artisan Producer Festival on Saturday, April 12th from 11am - 3pm is a FREE tasting and meet-the-maker event features producers of artisan cheese, bread, beer, wine, charcuterie, confections, and other food stuffs. Along with a stage show packed with chef demonstrations and informative panels.

    FOLLOW US HERE AND ON FACEBOOK IN THE WEEKS LEADING UP TO THE FESTIVAL AS WE CONTINUE TO PROFILE MORE OF THE PRODUCERS ATTENDING THIS YEAR!

  • Pastoral's Artisan Producer Festival Lineup Announced!

    Each Spring we host nearly 100 producers and vendors from around the world at Chicago French Market to celebrate the makers who make what we do possible. Pastoral's Artisan Producer Festival is in its 4th year, and we are very excited to announce this year's schedule of demonstrations, discussions and more. Not only is this an incredible opportunity to meet these talented local and international culinary artisans and taste their products; there's a chance to learn about them and what they do and (thanks to the generosity of our sponsors) - it's FREE!

    APF web bannerCheck out this incredible lineup of artisan producer presentations, culinary demonstrations and discussions:

    11-11:20

    Welcome Announcement - Pastoral co-owner / founder Greg O'Neill

    11:20-11:30

    A Discussion on Innovative Food Entrepreneurship in Chicagoland - presented by culinary incubator Now We're Cookin' owner Nell Funk and incubator manager Natalie Shmulik

    11:40-11:50

    Raw Food Culinary Demonstration - presented by raw food advocate Polly Gaza co-owner of RAW Chicago

    12-12:30

    The Art of Pairing Craft Beer and Cheese - presented by Goose Island Beer Company’s resident expert Suzanne Wolcott

    12:40-12:55

    Culinary Demonstration, A Sneak Peek at Bar Pastoral's Upcoming Brunch Menu - presented by Bar Pastoral’s New Chef Brooks Hart

    12:55-1:05

    Specialty Food Association’s “sofi” Awards: Why They Matter to Us All - Presented by Ken Seiter, Specialty Food Association

    1:10-1:40

    Panel Discussion on Heritage Meats, Charcuterie Styles and Techniques - Presented by Brady Lowe, founder of Cochon 555, Michael Sullivan of Cochon 555, Chris Eley of Smoking Goose, Gregory Laketek of West Loop Salumi and Elias Cairo of Olympic Provisions

    1:50-2:20

    Culinary Demonstration, Making of the Girl & the Goat “Pig Face” From Farm to Plate - Presented by Chef Will Cordero of Girl & the Goat

    2:30-2:40

    Artisan Breads of France’s Alsace Region - Presented by La Fournette Bakery Owner Pierre Zimmermann

    We hope you will join us for Pastoral's 4th Annual Artisan Producer Festival, featuring the incredible demonstrations and panels above, plus tons of tasting, meeting and fun - all FREE to the public. Find out more about Pastoral's Artisan Producer Festival HERE

  • Creminelli Fine Meats - Pastoral's Artisan Producer Festival Highlights

    cristiano_holding_salamiThe Creminelli family has been crafting artisan meats since the 1600s. Their legacy lies in their integrity, sourcing locally produced, organic and all natural ingredients, including heritage meats that are raised exclusively on vegetarian feed without the use of antibiotics.

    Cristiano Creminelli earned his family's Salumificio di Vigliano the prestigious Artisanal Excellence Award, making it the first meat producer in the province to receive the award bestowed by the renowned Piedmont Region and Slow Food Organization. As Cristiano grew his family's business, he became determined to mirror their European success in the US.

    In 2006 he made the commitment to grow Creminelli Fine Meats
    in America, providing the domestic charcuterie scene with a burgeoning supply of traditionally crafted Italian meat specialties never before available in the US. Sample some of the delicious charcuterie, like Wild Boar Salami that Creminelli Fine Meats will be bringing to 4th Annual Artisan Producer Festival.

    Held every Spring at Chicago's French Market, Pastoral's 4th Annual Artisan Producer Festival on Saturday, April 12th from 11am - 3pm is a FREE tasting and meet-the-maker event features producers of artisan cheese, bread, beer, wine, charcuterie, confections, and other food stuffs. Along with a stage show packed with chef demonstrations and informative panels.

    FOLLOW US HERE AND ON FACEBOOK IN THE WEEKS LEADING UP TO THE FESTIVAL AS WE CONTINUE TO PROFILE MORE OF THE PRODUCERS ATTENDING THIS YEAR!

  • How to Make Duck Prosciutto

    If you haven't already, check out Garron's earlier post on Safety in Home Charcuterie, check it out to learn more about the safety & risks of Charcuterie at Home!

    My first charcuterie attempt was curing and drying a duck breast. The recipe is simple and most people can do it even without a curing box. You'll need a thermometer/hygrometer and a small room in your house where you can maintain a temperature of 50-60 F with a humidty of 60-70%.  Be sure to sanitize the room by wiping down surfaces with a diluted bleach solution, and you'll be ready to go!  I have used dark closets at home before I built my curing chamber. Just remember that light will spoil fat so a darker room is better.

    4011Duck Prosciutto Recipe and Procedure
    Ingredient List:

    • 1 large or 2 smaller Whole duck breasts, skin on
    • 1-3 Cups of kosher salt, or as needed
    • 1 Teaspoon cracked black pepper
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 2 cloves of smashed garlic

    You will also need:

    • Cheesecloth
    • Butchers twine

    Instructions:

    1. Line the bottom of a non-reactive container (glass, plastic, etc.) with about half of your kosher salt. You will want about a ¼ to ½ inch of salt so depending on the size of the dish you will have to adjust.
    2. Crush the garlic, pepper, and bay leaf (reserving enough pepper to dust the breast after rinsing the salt off) and rub them into the duck breast and place into the dish on top of the salt.
    3. Cover the Duck with the remaining salt and make sure it is completely covered. Wrap with plastic and refrigerate 24 hours
    4. Rinse off the cure with cold water and pat dry with paper towels (The flesh of the duck should feel firm from the salt pulling out moisture. At this point weigh the duck breast and start a log of weight to determine doneness when drying)
    5. Wrap in cheesecloth and hang with butchers twine (about 60% humidity and 50-60 F)
    6. Dry between 1-2 weeks until the meat has lost 30% of its weight or when the meat feels quite firm, but not hard throughout. You should be able to slice in to the breast with a knife.  If you can't, the breast has dried out too much and might not be too pleasant to eat. The color of the duck should be a deep red, and the meat should smell almost sweet like a cured ham. If the meat still feels quite soft in the middle after a week or so let it hang for a few more days.
  • Top 5 Picnic Sites in Chicago

    Toast web crop

    They're happy because they're eating cheese, releasing chemicals into the body such as epinephrine, dopamine, and the opioid casomorphin.

    With so many options to choose from, Chicago is a great city for picnicking.  Here are just a few of our personal favorite spots!

    1. Millenium Park (201 E. Randolph)

    Millenium Park Great LawnWhy:  The sprawling lawn in front of the Pritzker Pavillion at Millenium Park is an ideal site for a picnic on any day, but with free concert events like the Grant Park Music Festival, Downtown Sound and the brand new 2013 Millenium Park Film Series
    , Millenium Park turns into the perfect date night or social scene all summer long.

    Picnic Pairing:  Continental Picnic - A great European-inspired picnic that includes firmer cheeses, single-varietal honey and hand-made salumi.
    Wine Pairing:  Pittnauer Burgenlander Rot - This versatile Austrian take on Pinot Noir is light enough for summer sipping, and comes in a 1L bottle!


    2. Movies in the Park

    chicago-movies-in-the-parkWhy:  Check out this great schedule for free public screenings of popular movies at parks all around the city.  It's a great way to check out different neighborhoods and there's movies for all tastes, (we're particularly excited about The Goonies and Ghostbusters).  It's a great way to celebrate popular culture en plein air!

    Picnic Pairing: Sweet and Savory - Just like the movies, you'll get a selection of sweet and salty snacks to much on during the show!
    Wine Pairing:  Alva - It's light and spritzy and goes with popcorn and chocolate just as well as any cheese..


    3. On the boulevards

    LoganSquare-v1Why: Chicago adopted the motto Urbs in Horto, which means City in a Garden in 1837.  In order to beautify the city for its growing population, the system of the Grand Boulevards was conceived.  To this day, the broad, tree-lined Boulevards encase the city to the North, South and West, providing diverse neighborhoods with green space right outside their front door!

    Picnic Pairing:  Locavore - It's all sourced from the Midwest, so it's perfect for a neighborhood get together.

     


     

    Shady Lane Riesling - It tastes like sunshine. Seriously.


     

    4. 57th Street Beach (5700 S. Lake Shore Drive)

    57th street beachWhy: Located just south of the popular Promontory Park (which topped Steve Dolinsky's Picnic List) 57th Street Beach is clean and tends to be less crowded than many of its North Side counterparts.  The beach is within walking distance of the Museum of Science and Industry.  It's also adjacent to Jackson Park, which features fishing, golf, gardens and more, so you can make a day out of your trip after enjoying your picnic on the rocky lake shore!

    Picnic Pairing: Tapas for Two - Inspired by the simple, satisfying cuisine of Spain, the beach is the perfect place to munch on roasted red peppers and briny olives.
    Beverage Pairing: Glass containers won't fly on Chicago Beaches, so make sure to bring a few delicious cans of San Pellegrino soda, available in our stores in Lemon, Orange, Blood Orange and Grapefruit flavors.


    5. Oz Park (2021 N. Burling Street)

    oz parkWhy: Check out the statues in Lincoln Park's Wizard of Oz themed park and revisit one of the most popular stories of our time.  Kids can play in Dorothy's Playlot, or you can stroll through the community flower garden to admire the colors and take a break from the monotony of city life.

    Picnic Pairing: French Countryside - Heighten your sense of nostalgia with rustic French comfort food.  Taste some Country Pate with a crunchy cornichon and you'll forget all about the Wicked Witch...

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    Our Continental Picnic ready to eat with some sparkling Rose and a few Go Vino cups so you can open container it in style!  Oh yeah, and if you do bring wine to a public place, please be aware of park policies & be safe and mindful with your alcohol consumption.

    All of Pastoral's picnics cost $39.99 and are built for two.  They include napkins, plates, forks, knives and a full baguette, and are packed into a craft carrier.  Pre-order online 24 hours in advance or call one of our stores to place your order 6 hours in advance.

  • Meet the Best of the Fest

    The 3rd Annual Pastoral’s Artisan Producer Festival was a HUGE success. It was a full house with 89 artisan producers and vendors, plus over 12,000 guests in attendance!

    Culture Magazine: The Word on Cheese sponsored a special ‘Best of the Fest’ Competition. We are very pleased to present to you the winners of these tasty awards!

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    Best-in-Show: Alemar Cheese Company's Bent River Camembert

    Find Online & In-Stores

    beehive1Most Innovative Products: Beehive Cheese Company's Earl Grey Cheese

    Find Beehive Cheese Co. Online & In-Stores for a limited time

    salted caramelMost Decadent: Salted Caramel's Bacon Bourbon Caramel Corn

    Find Online & in-Stores

    koval Most Likely to Become a Trend: Koval Distillery's Jasmine Liquer

    Find Koval Distillery In-Stores

    sams2zingermansBest Comfort Food: Sam's Gourmet Lasagna & Zingerman's Cream Cheese

    Find Sam's Gourmet Lasagna at the Chicago French Market
    Find Zingerman's Cream Cheese Online & In-Stores for a limited time

    smoking goose

    Best Booth Display: Smoking Goose Meatery

    Find Online & In-Stores

     

    Thanks to our wonderful judges for lending us their taste-buds for this great event! Amy Scheuerman from Culture Magazine, Brady Lowe from Cochon 555, Ann Flood from Edible Chicago, Sara Hill from Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, Bruce Sherman from North Pond, Pascal Bensidoun from the Chicago French Market, Catherine De Orio from Culinarycurator.com, Ari Bendersky from Abe's Market, David Hammond from Chicago Sun Times, and Greg Mosko from North Pond

    Fest Judges

  • Charcuterie at Home: Charcuterie Safety and Risks

    Think food-safety first when making charcuterie at home.

    Charcuterie is similar to cooking a steak or vegetables on your stove; both actions are the manipulation of time and temperature to accomplish a finished project.

    Sliced Braesola and Guanciale As fun and easy as charcuterie can be at home, I wanted to review some of the risks and safety procedures when making your own cured meats. Most dry cured whole muscles and sausages will never reach a temperature higher than that of the curing chamber, about 60 degrees. (In the case of fermented sausages, the temperature of the meat peaks during the fermentation stage, usually somewhere around 100 F.) The temperatures that meats are fermenting and drying at are in the danger zone, so it is VERY important to be very sanitary and to understand how we make these items safe to eat. If you are serious about doing any of these projects at home, you will definitely need to research safety and risks beyond this blog.

    The temperatures that meats are fermenting and drying at are in the danger zone, so it is very important to be very sanitary and to understand how we make these items safe to eat.

     

    There are many great books out there and a lot of online readings that can better teach you about the risks and how to be sanitary, but I will lay down some basics that you can use and begin to understand this beautiful art. The first book I ever read about charcuterie was Michael Rhulman and Brian Polcyn’s book Charcuterie. This book has all you need to know about safety and many helpful recipes for the beginner and advanced cooks. Their new book Salumi: The Craft of Italian Dry Curing is also very helpful.

    seasalt4

    So how can a piece of meat that has never reached a temperature greater than 60 degrees be safe to eat? While that answer depends greatly on the project, the first line of defense in any charcuterie recipe is salt.

    When curing whole muscles, any harmful bacteria that may be present is going to be on the outside of the meat. The application of salt creates an environment on the outside of the meat that prevents harmful bacteria from multiplying or surviving. This step, which is taken when curing whole muscles,  drastically reduces the risk of botulism. Botulism spores develop and multiply in a mildly acidic, oxygen-free environment (such as the middle of a sausage, where the meat has been ground and stuffed into a casing). That’s why curing the whole muscle, like a duck breast or a pork loin, in salt is your first and most important safety step when curing meat.

    There should be free flowing air in your chamber which makes it a different environment then say the inside of a stuffed sausage.

     

    The second line of defense is to remove moisture from the meat, since bacteria tend to thrive in high-moisture environments. (In the case of projects such as bacon, smoke and heat is used to bring the meat up to 150 F which makes it fully cooked and safe to eat.) In order to dry your meat, you’ll need a Curing Chamber. Your Curing Chamber will need to be a sanitary box where you can control the temperature and humidity and also keep air flowing. Usually a small refrigerator or wine cooler will work, as long as you can set it to maintain a temperature between 50-60 F. If your Curing Chamber does not automatically come with this type of feature, it is easy to get a temperature controller that will shut your fridge off at a certain temperature. A good source for the temperature controller in the Chicago area is Brew and Grow.

    Drying ChamberThe really tricky part is maintaining a humidty of 60-70%. The humidity in the chamber is not harmful because there should be free flowing air in your chamber which makes it a different environment then say the inside of a stuffed sausage. If you were looking for an online retailer for either the temperature or humidity controller, along with all your other curing needs, www.sausagemaker.com/ has everything you need.

    The third line of defense, which comes into play when curing sausage, is the addition of pink salts (sodium nitrate and nitrite) and mold starter cultures. Nitrates have recently gained a negative reputation as a result of industry abuse, as well as media misinformation. Nitrates are naturally occurring in vegetables and should not scare you. When used in the proper dosage, pink salts are not harmful to people and contribute to the flavor and color of cured meats. Not to mention the fact that they can also prevent botulism, the enemy of the home curer. Since dry cured and fermented sausages are the perfect environment for harmful bacteria to grow in, we always use sodium nitrate and nitrite when preparing these types of charcuterie

    When used in the proper dosage, pink salts are not harmful to people and contribute to the flavor and color of cured meats. Not to mention the fact that they can also prevent botulism, the enemy of the home curer.

    There are many other steps and processes that render charcuterie safe to eat. For example, there is a fermentation stage that raises the acidity in the sausage so that any harmful bacteria is rapidly slowed down or eliminated. There are also mold cultures that are used to ensure that the good bacteria and mold out number any harmful organisms. These types of projects are the most difficult and the most "risky," but if you spend the time to do the research and are extremely sanitary and respectful with your product, these projects are the most rewarding.

    Pork Belly and Spansh Chorizo    Coppa

    Pastoral's own Garron Sanchez grew up in the Midwest and has been cooking in restaurants for around 10 years. He has been studying and working in Chicago since 2009 and has developed a great love for anything pickled, smoked, salted, or fermented.

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