on the guys behind The Butcher Blog.
We imagine that the writers of The Butcher Blog are burly urban woodsman types who know how to keep a girl warm at night (kind of like the plaid shirted hottie we saw so many years ago at the cheese counter of Stinky Brooklyn and have been thinking about ever since).
Since grilling season is gearing up, we caught up with the guys behind The Butcher Blog to get some practical tips on cooking in the urban environment. Now we’re just wondering when they’re inviting us over for some pork and Pork Slap…
Gastronomista: If you only have access to a fire escape, what do you need to cook well during grill season?
Butcher Blog: In
G: What are the must-have tools? What grill? What charcoal?
BB: We're big Weber fans—simple, classic and easy to use. They have a bunch of different sizes too, so you can find one that fits your needs. A pair of long handled tongs are also essential. At no time should the classic BBQ fork get near your grill—piercing the sear is sacrilege and we die a little inside every time we see somebody wielding one of those things. A note about charcoal: Kingsford is not charcoal. Their reconstituted bricks don't get the job done and should always be avoided. We're big fans of
G: What cookbook should you use to guide you?
BB: Pork & Sons by Stéphane Reynaud has everything you need to prepare every part of the pig in every single way (from making your own sausage and terrines to barbecuing a whole suckling pig -- you'll need a Bushwick backyard and some cinderblocks for that one).
Editor's Note: We love this book. We actually were reading it once at the bar of a Brooklyn restaurant, and we very swiftly managed to pick up the Chef, who kept trotting out to the bar to chit chat. He was a smoothe operator... on seeing the book, he said, "If you like Pork and Sons, I need to loan you my charcuterie book... but I have to get your phone number as collaterol."
G: What are you listening to while you cook (and for that matter, eat)?
BB: The Mets game. Creedence. Skynrd. Beach House. Tom Waits. Sonic Youth. Wooden Shjips.
G: What should be on the menu, including beverages?
BB: That suckling pig sounds pretty good right now. You'll want to ask your butcher to reserve the liver and heart for you, which you chop with some smoked bacon and mix with fresh bread crumbs, eggs, olive oil, garlic, fresh herbs (sage, parsley, rosemary, whatever looks good), and stuff that in the pig. This takes about three hours on a spit, which means you'll have plenty of time to down some Pork Slap to keep it thematic (plus beer in cans in a necessity when cooking outdoors).
Baste the suckling pig with a mixture of white wine (get something drinkable because you'll use about 4 cups and finish the rest; it'll mix fine with the Pork Slap), olive oil and a few dabs of