This lit­tle piggy went to mar­ket

It’s Na­tional Pork Month

The Southern Berks News - - LIVING - By Emily Ryan For Dig­i­tal First Me­dia

On a re­cent sunny Satur­day, Jeremy Dun­phy greeted shop­pers at the Down­ing­town Farm­ers Mar­ket. Be­hind him: an eye-catch­ing sign show­ing a happy pig loung­ing in the grass.

“Our pigs are pas­tured,” de­scribed the co-owner of Pas­ture Song Farm. “Old-time farm­ers say, ‘You fi­nally got smart. That’s the way we used to do it.’”

Dun­phy and Clara Os­borne raise mixed her­itage-breed hogs in South Coven­try.

“There is more fat on our pork. It has more fla­vor,” he said. “It’s the pork the way mil­len­ni­als’ grand­par­ents ate.”

And the color may sur­prise you. “It’s red. It’s not white,” Dun­phy added. “It’s not your par­ents’ other white meat.”

See for your­self. Oc­to­ber’s Na­tional Pork Month.

“One of my hopes is peo­ple start show­ing pork just a lit­tle bit more re­spect,” said Brian Coble of Car­ni­copia Meats in Malvern. He and Alexi Ale­jan­dro of­fer lo­cally sourced, pas­ture-raised, her­itage­breed pork (and more) de­liv­ered to your doorstep.

“You can get the in­ter­est­ing cuts that you’d never see in stores,” he ex­plained. “We re­ally pride our­selves on cus­tom butcher­ing.”

Try a coppa steak, which “is ba­si­cally the Del­monico of the pig,” or bone-in pork belly – “es­sen­tially pork short ribs.”

“There’s more to pork than just pork chops and ba­con,” said Coble. “We’re ex­cited to share that with customers.”

He also shared recipes like braised pork brisket.

Din­ing out? Sa­vor the “veg­etable-for­ward” pork Mi­lanese at Main & Vine in Vil­lanova.

“It’s very nos­tal­gic be­cause I grew up eat­ing things like this,” re­called ex­ec­u­tive chef Charles Vogt. “At the same time, it’s dif­fer­ent. We put our own lit­tle twist on it.”

The dish fea­tures cu­cum­ber and heir­loom tomato salad, shaved Parme­san and 12-year aged bal­samic. But the star, of course, is the meat it­self – breaded and pan­fried in grape­seed oil.

“You want to start with that great, beau­ti­ful pork,” he said. “There’s a lot of great pork in the area.”

Bone-in Pork Belly


2 (3/4- to 1-pound) bone-in pork belly

2 1/2 ta­ble­spoons sweet pa­prika

2 tea­spoons chili power

2 tea­spoons dried mus­tard

1 tea­spoon kosher salt

1/2 tea­spoon black pep­per­corn, ground

1/4 tea­spoon gran­u­lated gar­lic

1/2 tea­spoon chili flakes (op­tional for heat)

1 tea­spoon brown sugar (op­tional for sweet­ness) 2 sprigs fresh rose­mary In­struc­tions

Pre­heat the grill with a ca­st­iron pan or grid­dle to 400 de­grees. Be sure the pan is large enough to hold the bone-in pork belly. If pos­si­ble, put the pan off the flames. Mix all the sea­son­ings to­gether ex­cept the rose­mary. Rub the bone-in pork belly with the spice blend un­til evenly dis­trib­uted. You can sea­son the belly overnight in the re­frig­er­a­tor. Re­duce the grill to medium-low heat, about 325 to 350 de­grees, and then sear the bone-in belly in the pan or grid­dle on all sides with­out any oil. Don’t walk away from the grill or close the lid, the belly will sear quickly! Once all the sides are seared, close the lid and al­low to cook for about 10 min­utes. Keep an eye on the belly ev­ery 10 min­utes, flip­ping if one side starts to brown too much. Cook time is about 1 to 1 1/2 hours or un­til fork tender. For the last 10 min­utes of cook­ing, add the rose­mary sprigs to the pan. Al­low the bone-in pork belly to rest for 10 min­utes. Feel free to serve with your fa­vorite bar­be­cue sauce. You can eat with a knife-and-fork or with your hands. Serves 2.

Recipe Courtesy Of Car­ni­copia Meats

Grilled Coppa Steak


1 (1/2- to 3/4-pound) coppa steak

1 or 2 sprigs fresh thyme

Kosher salt and pep­per


Al­low the steak to reach room tem­per­a­ture for 10 min­utes. Pre­heat the grill to high. Pat the steak dry and sea­son with the pep­per and thyme. Let it sit for 10 min­utes so the steak can ab­sorb the sea­son­ings. Sea­son with the salt right be­fore grilling. Put the steak on the hottest part of the grill to get an ini­tial sear and then im­me­di­ately turn the heat down to medium-low, about 350 de­grees. Cook on in­di­rect heat if pos­si­ble. Watch out for flare-ups if cook­ing di­rectly over the flame; the fat from the steak will drip! For medium, grill about 8 min­utes each side or un­til it reaches an in­ter­nal tem­per­a­ture of 140 de­grees. For medium-well, grill about 10 min­utes each side or un­til it reaches an in­ter­nal tem­per­a­ture of 145 to 150 de­grees. For well-done, grill at least 12 min­utes each side or un­til it reaches an in­ter­nal tem­per­a­ture of 155 de­grees. Take the steak off the grill, cover and rest for about 8 to 10 min­utes. Serve and en­joy! Serves 1.

Recipe Courtesy Of Car­ni­copia Meats

Braised Pork Brisket al Latte with Rose­mary & Sage


3 pounds pork brisket, but­ter­flied so evenly flat

3/4 pound ren­dered lard, cold, cut in small chunks

2 to 3 sprigs fresh rose­mary

3 cloves roasted gar­lic, minced

2 to 3 ta­ble­spoons olive oil

Juice of 1/2 lemon, re­serve juiced lemon half

1/2 to 3/4 gal­lon whole milk, grass-fed for best fla­vor, room tem­per­a­ture

10 to 15 leaves fresh sage, chopped


With a rub­ber spat­ula, mix the cold lard, roasted gar­lic, and rose­mary leaves un­til well dis­trib­uted. Keep the mix­ture cold. You may need to put in the re­frig­er­a­tor/ freezer while mix­ing to keep the lard from ren­der­ing into a liq­uid. Sea­son the pork brisket with salt and pep­per and then evenly spread about half the lard mix­ture. Roll the brisket tightly, so it is a long roll (think how you’d want to slice and serve it). Tie tightly and evenly along the roll to keep it com­pact. Sea­son the out­side of the roll with salt and pep­per and then spread the re­main­ing lard mix­ture on the out­side.

Pre­heat your oven to 350 de­grees. On a stove­top, sear all the sides of the brisket in an oven-safe casse­role dish or cast-iron pan in a lit­tle olive oil. It should be about 5 to 8 min­utes per side. Be sure the cook­ware is large enough for the brisket to fit into! After sear­ing, add a few sprigs of rose­mary to the pan along with the lemon juice. Take the used lemon half and slice about a quar­ter of it and throw that in the pan too. Add enough milk to the pan to reach at least halfway up the brisket. Re­duce the heat to medium and bring to a sim­mer. Cover with foil or cook­ware lid and roast in the oven un­til the brisket is fork tender, about 1 hour 45 min­utes to 2 hours. Re­move the brisket from the pan to a cut­ting board or dish. Cover and let it rest. Re­move the lemon rind and rose­mary sprigs and skim any ex­cess fat from the cook­ing liq­uid. Boil the cook­ing liq­uid un­til it has re­duced to a saucy con­sis­tency (should be able to coat a spoon). Add half the sage leaves to the liq­uid, puree or blend the cook­ing liq­uid un­til smooth and sea­son to taste. Slice the brisket in de­sir­able por­tions and serve with the milk sauce. Gar­nish with any re­main­ing sage leaves. Serves 5 or 6.

Recipe Courtesy Of Car­ni­copia Meats

Pork Mi­lanese


4 (6-ounce) pork chops Bread­ing:

2 cups all-pur­pose flour

8 eggs, beaten

1 quart panko bread crumbs

1 cup Parme­san cheese

1/2 cup pars­ley

1 tea­spoon gar­lic pow­der

2 tea­spoon kosher salt

1 tea­spoon black pep­per Salad:

2 cups or­ganic cu­cum­bers

2 cups heir­loom cherry toma­toes

1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion

3 cups or­ganic baby arugula

2 ta­ble­spoons ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil

2 ta­ble­spoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Shaved Parme­san cheese

Cracked pep­per

Sea salt

12-year aged bal­samic In­struc­tions

Lightly pound out your pork chops to about 1/4-inch thin, or you could have your butcher do it for you. You will need three con­tain­ers for bread­ing: one for the all-pur­pose flour, one for the eggs and the fi­nal one for the sea­soned bread crumb mix (bread crumbs, Parme­san, pars­ley, gar­lic pow­der, kosher salt and pep­per). Lightly dredge the pork chops in flour mak­ing sure to fully coat, shake off any ex­cess and dip into the egg mix­ture. Again, shake off the ex­cess and dip into the bread crumb. Make sure to press on the bread crumb, so it fully coats your chops. In a large skil­let, heat grape­seed oil over medium-high heat. When oil is hot, add in your pork, work­ing in batches and adding more oil if nec­es­sary. Cook un­til cut­lets are golden brown on the bot­tom (roughly 3 min­utes) Flip and cook un­til cooked through, 3 more min­utes. Trans­fer to a heav­ily lined plate to ab­sorb any ex­cess oil. In a large bowl, toss your cu­cum­ber, tomato, red onion and arugula with your lemon and olive oil. Sea­son gen­er­ously with sea salt and cracked pep­per; top your pork chops with the salad. Then make it snow all over the top with your Parme­san cheese. Driz­zle your aged bal­samic all over the top and en­joy. Serves 4.

Tip: When bread­ing, al­ways re­mem­ber to keep one hand dry and one hand for wet.

Recipe Courtesy Of Main & Vine

Just the facts…

You know pork’s high in pro­tein, right? Well, it’s also rich in vi­ta­mins and min­er­als like thi­amin, niacin, ri­boflavin, vi­ta­min B-6, phos­pho­rus, zinc and potas­sium. And chew on this: World­wide, peo­ple eat more pork than chicken or beef.

The United States is one of the lead­ing pork pro­duc­ers.

In the nine­teenth cen­tury, Cincin­nati earned the nick­name “Porkopo­lis” as the coun­try’s chief hog-pack­ing cen­ter.

Source: Pork Check­off, www.


Pigs “for­age graze” at Pas­ture Song Farm.


Ever tasted bone-in pork belly?


Ex­ec­u­tive chef Charles Vogt “grew up in an Ital­ian house­hold eat­ing pork Mi­lanese.”


Jeremy Dun­phy started Pas­ture Song Farm 4 years ago.


Try brais­ing pork brisket in milk with rose­mary and sage.


Main & Vine puts a fresh spin on pork Mi­lanese.


Pas­ture Song Farm sells frozen sausage and more at the Down­ing­town Farm­ers Mar­ket.


The own­ers’ “ad­mi­ra­tion and love of pas­ture” in­spired the name Pas­ture Song Farm.

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