Monday, April 11, 2011

John Besh's Mangalitsa Pigs

Here's La Provence's Executive Chef Erick Loos IV with John Besh's new pigs.

Shown here are photos of the feeders. Most are small and very cute.

This year they'll be participating in Cochon 555. They'll be finishing their own pig. I think this is the first time that a restaurant & farm has finished its own pig and competed with it in Cochon 555.

In addition to the feeders, the got some breeding stock (not shown).

I had a funny talk with Erick. They recently slaughtered seven Mangalitsa pigs, to clear out space for the new pigs. He got an astounding 35 gallons of leaf lard. It is a ridiculous amount of lard.

I jokingly said he could always make some soap. He said now he understood why I'd been working so hard to get them using Mangalitsa lard. I mentioned I'd seen someone saying fries made with Mangalitsa lard are the best. We laughed a lot.

Things have changed quite a bit now; now that they are committed to Mangalitsa pigs, they'll be figuring out ways to use that lard. Before it was all on me to figure out what to do with that stuff; it is nice to share the heavy burden of Mangalitsa lard.

He said that Alon Shaya, Executive Chef at Domenica, is going to fill his fryer up with Mangalitsa lard. Everyone that comes in the door gets some fried pizza dough. At least for a while, it will be fried in Mangalitsa lard. When they run out, we've certainly got more for them.

My expectation is that the Besh Restaurant Group and Revival Market will do a lot in the next years to position Mangalitsa lard as a superior cooking fat.

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