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Unread 05-04-2013, 05:21 PM   #1
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Default I'm feeling a little cheeky

The kids just back from Jazz Fest NOLA. The band was taken to dinner at Cochon where Max's gf had pork cheeks and loved it. I'd like to make it for them one night. I'm looking for ideas and insight into this cut of meat. Got any.
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Unread 05-04-2013, 05:33 PM   #2
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I have made guanciale (Roman Pork Cheek Bacon) before, but I have never tried smoking pork cheeks. They are VERY fatty. I would think that braising would be the best approach.

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Unread 05-04-2013, 08:12 PM   #3
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You can see what the BBQ Pitmasters do with them here.

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Unread 05-04-2013, 08:21 PM   #4
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Pork cheeks are not fatty, pork jowls are fatty. People, even butchers, get it confused. The pork cheek is a leaner cut of meat, it does the work of moving the jaws after all. The jowl sits under the cheek, it is a great cut for guanciale.

Pork cheek smokes up beautifully, similar to pork butt, in that you can smoke it to a pulling texture, or a slicing texture. Both work very well. You can also cure it into little tiny ham like cuts, if that is your thing.

Pork cheek, smoked carnitas style

Brains...brains...oh, oops, no, pork cheeks

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