Thursday, April 14, 2016

Made in Spain: Pork Love at Madrid Fusion Manila 2016

A shared history binds both Spain and the Philippines together in a bond so strong, it's seen, felt and experienced in the rich local cultural heritage and religious traditions to this day. But for me, the connection between Spain and the Philippines is evident with the shared love for pork...  


This porcine love is at the very center of any celebratory feast, from the Filipino Lechon and the Spanish Jamon. At the recent Madrid Fusion Manila 2016, Spain's Interporc, a professional industry association recognized by the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment, showcased the very best Spanish white pork with its Jamon Serrano and culinary creations by award-winning chef, Ivan Cerdeno. It's definitely pork love at Madrid Fusion Manila 2016...


Spanish pork is known for its flavor, tradition, quality, variety and traceability, and accounts for over 62% of the Spanish meat industry, and ranked as the fourth largest industrial sector in Spain. Spain is also the world's fourth largest pork meat producer, after China, the US, and Germany. With these impressive numbers, it's no surprise that pork is the most important livestock sector in Spain. And Spanish pork is definitely one of the best in the world. Last year, Spain's pork exports to the Philippines increased by 20.9% in total tonnage, expected to increase even more this year. And it's a continuing love affair with pork. At the Interporc booth, Chef Carola Vives masterfully carved the Jamon Serrano in swift and precise motions with paper-thin slices of pure pork bliss that melt in your mouth...


...making it one of the more popular booths in the exhibit area of Madrid Fusion Manila 2016. Every time Chef Carola Vives mounts another Jamon Serrano for carving, a queue suddenly forms up around the Interporc booth. And who can blame them...


The dry-cured Spanish ham made from white pork or the landrace breed of white pig are usually dried and cured in sheds or secaderos located in high elevations, hence the name "Serrano," the Spanish word for "sierra" or "mountain." Not to be confused with the more expensive Jamon Iberico made from free-range, acorn-fed black-hoofed Iberian pigs, the Jamon Serrano, or "mountain ham," has its own rustic richness and bold flavors, pairing well with fine Spanish wine and cheeses.


Seeing the Jamon Serrano carved up close is an experience in itself, with thin slices of pork marbled with a strip of fat for rich flavors. The delicate mild sweetness of the pork are punctuated by the delectably salty notes from the curing for balanced flavors.


And that's why we all love Spanish Jamon. But there's more. Interporc presented unique dishes featuring Spanish white pork in both traditional and modern interpretations prepared by Michelin-starred chef, Ivan Cerdeno.


Chef Ivan Cerdeno, the multi-awarded and Michelin-starred chef of El Carmen de Montesion in Toledo, Spain, shared two flavorful recipes reflecting a rustic and comforting traditional dish as well as a modern and creative take on pork to highlight its versatility.


Chef Ivan Cerdeno's Ham Croquettes plays with contrasting textures and flavors with each bite, with the creamy Jamon Serrano-infused roux with a crisp outer layer of breading. The mild smoky and salty notes of the Jamon Serrano tempers the richness of the roux, capped by the crisp Panko breading. And the Jamon Serrano pairs so well with the recipe. Just perfect.


Next, Cef Ivan Cerdeno presented his elegant Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Tomatoes and Peanuts, marinated for twelve hours in an Asian-inspired marinade and topped with cherry tomatoes, peanuts and herbs. The subtle sweetness of the tender, melt-in-your-mouth pork is complemented by the sharp notes of the marinade, finished by the peanuts, minty herbs and tart cherry tomatoes for even more layers of flavor and texture. It's a refreshingly new and flavorful way to enjoy pork, and you too can recreate it at home with the recipes below. Two distinct and masterfully executed dishes showcasing the versatility of pork. Pork love renewed, at Madrid Fusion Manila.


There's just nothing quite like the rich flavors of authentic Spanish Jamon to remind you why you love pork. Special thanks to the friendly team from Interporc, and thanks for the pork love at Madrid Fusion Manila 2016.

Hungry? Enjoy Michelin-starred chef Ivan Cerdeno's innovative pork recipes at home with the recipes below and share some pork love...

Ham Croquettes
Ingredients:
  • 960 g Cubed Serrano Ham (approximately 4x4mm with no fat)
  • 2 Serrano Ham bones
  • 3600 g Whole Milk
  • 520 g Butter
  • 520 g All-Purpose Flour
  • 400 g Liquid Cream
  • 20 sheets of gelatin
  • 500 g Panko
  • Egg, beaten
Procedure:
  1. Infuse the milk with ham bones.
  2. Dry the cubed ham in the oven.
  3. Make the roux by melting the butter and toasting the flour in butter for about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the very hot infused milk to the roux using a strainer.
  5. Once the roux is smooth, add the cubed ham.
  6. Heat up the liquid cream until just before the boiling point and add the gelatin sheets.
  7. Remove the roux and ham mixture from the fire and add the heated cream with gelatin.
  8. Mix very well.
  9. Allow the mixture to rest in the refrigerator for a day.
Preparation:
  1. Roll the mixture into balls of about 42-45 g each and dip each croquette in the egg and then roll in the panko.
  2. Fry the Croquettes in very hot oil.
  3. Place in an oven for a few minutes before serving to make it crunchier.
Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Tomatoes and Peanuts
Ingredients:
  • 2 Whole Pork Tenderloins, cubed into 2 cm pieces
  • Cherry Tomatoes, peeled
  • Spring Onions, chopped
  • Fresh herbs
Marinade:
  • 350 g Green Shisho Sauce
  • 150 g Oyster Sauce
  • 90 g Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 10 g Garlic, ground
Procedure:
  1. Mix all the marinade ingredients together in a deep dish.
  2. Add the cubed pork tenderloin to the mix and allow it to sit in the marinade for 12 hours.
Presentation:
  1. Skewer the pork cubes and place a cherry tomato on top.
  2. Sprinkle top with peanuts and spring onions.
  3. Dip in the marinade once more and top with fresh herbs.
For more information on Interporc, check out their website at http://www.interporc.com/

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