Now this is a chicharrón and a half; truly a giant amongst them all. To give you an idea of the scale, this shot shows it posed alongside a quite normally sized human:
The Berkshire’ [note how this breed keeps coming up..] skin is boiled for about 4 hours to soften completely, then cooled and any excess fat left on it, is scraped away. After up to 14 hours in a dehydrator, they’re further crisped up — under a grill, at around 190ºC — to remove any last moisture hanging around before being fried. In a LARGE pot of oil, as these beasts puff up quickly, almost like that compressed foam you use in wall-cavity insulation, expanding into every crack & crevice. Seasoned, after letting any oil drip away, (in this case) with red wine & white wine vinegar powder, salt and served over a crushed corn paste.
This one comes from the chef involved at The Aviary bar (part of Grant Achetz’ Alinea empire) — and as we’ve agreed that we’ll not enter the US again, at least until The Orange Stain is removed & all his evil, truly evil, works undone, I’ll just have to make my own.
Which does mean that I need to buy a hydrator. An action that seems in no way excessive (that will see if Val actually reads this particular piece and it provokes a response)…
And for those who like visual guides, here you go: