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5 Things – Vol. 15

5 Things Again?!

Of course!

Why Not?

OK!

 

1.

PUT IT IN A BOX

December happened and mail order did it once again. We sent over 1800 boxes full of delicious food to really cool people all over the country! It was lovely, chaotic, overwhelming, and appreciated. Take that and wrap it in an insulated box! Holy cow, pig or fish.

 

2.

WHO WANTS TO GET NUTS!?

Our office is small and the portion that gets used for mail order is even smaller. It often felt like our packing materials were going to quite literally box us in! To make matters worse we trapped Jeremy, took Celestine for a ride and covered Joe in peanuts multiple times. Anybody want to get nuts? Let’s get nuts!

 

3.

BREAKING RECORDS AND TAKING ORDERS

Friday was our busiest day ever and it’s no surprise that It was completely bonkers! The line weaved its way through DeWitt Seitz, People waited patiently and our staff crushed it! Thank you to all everyone involved.

 

4.

Nos Fumant Aliquid

Last week our hardworking, dedicated, and talented crew smoked over 1 ton of fish. Enough said…

 

5.

ONE REMARKABLE RIDE

The final hours are nearing for our sibling up on Woodland Avenue, Northern Waters Restaurant. The doors close for good on New Years Eve. Saturday will be the last dinner service and Sunday will be the last brunch. So, please stop by and enjoy your favorite Northern Waters Restaurant dishes. We hope you lift a glass and share a laugh with us. It’s been a remarkable ride!

 

BONUS 5

LET’S TALK ABOUT THE WEATHER AGAIN

As locals know, this weeks weather has been straight up frigid. The bright side is everything looks so beautiful when it’s this cold. Every smoke stack is so defined and the sea smoke on the lake is intensely stunning. Bundle up and get out there!

 

See you next week folks!

-Stephen Pestalozzi Creative Dept. / Northern Waters Smokehaus

 

 

 

 

 

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Deep Cuts, Volume 1: Pancetta Fantasia

Now that the summer rush is over, and the mayhem of December has only begun to fully impact our shop, I have had a lot of time to reflect on our products. Sure, they’re great (some award-winning). Sure, we as a deli have concocted a large number of sandwiches and platters to show them off. Sure, you may have read the blog posts and online reviews, or have yourself experienced dreaming about them. But have any of us fully experienced their potential? This new column is a stab at indexing the various applications and combinations of the products available at our humble deli. It originates from discussions with coworkers, my own experimentation, standard (free!) sample combinations we’re fond of offering to our beloved patrons, and NWS takes on classic dishes. Hopefully, it will someday incorporate NWS crew-approved suggestions from you, dear reader. These are some ideas from my first day of R&D. This will be serial. This is only the beginning.


First up, we have pancetta recipes. Pancetta is an Italian-style bacon made of pork belly meat. Here at NWS, we make our pancetta with high-quality Minnesota-raised Berkshire pork and smoke it to savory perfection. Though it is commonly served cold-cut, we most prominently feature crispy pancetta alongside maple-sage smoked turkey breast on our best-selling daily (Thursday) special, the Clubhaus. It’s also available for purchase by-weight from our deli—sliced is best for sandwiches, charcuterie arrangements and crispy bacon; otherwise I’d recommend a slab 1-2” thick.

 

Pancetta combinations

 

  • Pancetta & peas – This one speaks for itself. Cube some pancetta, strain a can of peas, fry up the pancetta in a pan, and once it’s bubbling in its own grease, throw in the peas. Serve it as is, as a side; or throw it over brown rice and call it a light meal.
  • Pancetta potatoes – Looking for a bit more bang for your buck? This tip is a favorite of our beloved owner, Eric. When you fry your pancetta, save the grease for delicious fried potatoes. Season with rosemary, thyme, or your choice of herbs.
  • The Pan-Cheddar – Brace yourself. To be honest, I am salivating, perspiring, and hyperventilating thinking about this one. It begins with a story:

Once upon a time, when NWS began selling Widmer’s (amazing!) Two-Year Cheddar, the staff lost their collective mind. We are big fans of snacking around here, and as such, we began experimenting with and munching on cubes of that sweet, sweet cheddar, until the time came that we had eaten more of the “Forbidden Cheddar” than we had sold. Those were decadent and magical times, and though they are missed, they will never be forgotten. One of my favorite experiments is a sandwich, which will probably never make it onto our menu, but is easily attainable for our customers. It has three ingredients—all available for purchase from our deli: pancetta, Widmer’s Two-Year Cheddar, and a bagel. The instructions are simple: in a pan or in the oven, melt as much cheddar as you see fit on top of as much pancetta as you see fit (a thin layer of cheddar over a quarter inch-thick slice of pancetta works for me, but really, go crazy); toast a bagel; put the two together; die and go to food heaven.

 

 

 

 

 

The possibilities of NWS smoked pancetta are as limitless as your imagination. Customers have often bragged to me of their delicious pancetta jam and soup recipes, though since they have yet to bring me any samples, the jury is still out—If I’m talking about you and you’re reading this, get at me: sales@nwsmokehaus.com cc: Ned. Anywhere you want a high flavor-impact meat to influence your dish, smoked pancetta is a worthwhile option. Or you could just take a page from my playbook and treat it as its own dish right off the slicer. I won’t judge you.

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5 Things To Do With Porketta

porketta

5 Ways to Cook Smokehaus Porketta

So, you’ve got your beautiful hand-rolled slab of heaven – now what? There are many ways to cook Porketta, including a straightforward, roast til it’s hot approach. But for the creative-hearted and culinarily curious we have assembled a short list of preparations for your dining pleasure.

 

 

  1. Low and Slow: Roast Porketta at 325, covered and doused with a cup or so of liquid (white wine, lager, chicken stock or even a mild fruit juice such as apple will do). Keep it covered for the first hour and a half, then uncover and continue to roast until fall-apart tender (maybe another 45-60 minutes). When ready, take the roast out, let it sit for 5 minutes, and then shred like your life depends on it. You can use forks, tongs, or even gloved hands (but be careful – it will be hot!). Eat the whole delicious mixture over mashed potatoes, with your favorite pasta, or on a hard roll.
  2. Grill it: Because the Porketta is fully cooked, you need not worry about finessing your fire too much. You can reheat the Porketta in your oven at a higher temperature (say, 375) and when it because hot to the touch, transfer to a hot grill to crisp up the exterior crust. The results will be crunchy, smoky, and oh-so-meaty.
  3. Cute it Up: Cube it up? Cube your Porketta by cutting it into ½ inch chunks. Sprinkle with paprika and gently fry on a medium-heat skillet until the sides are crispy. Skewer them with other bite-sized cubed items like potatoes, cocktail onions, fennel, or sweet peppers (or our favorite – all of the above!). Serve on your holiday menu, or as an appetizer for a dinner party, or as a very high class midnight snack.
  4. Take it to the Club: Make an incredibly savory club sandwich by layering thin slicesof Porketta, right out of the package (it’s fully cooked, you know) with shaved fennel, sundried tomatoes, and crispy pancetta, and lemon basil mayonnaise (you can just amp up your Hellman’s with a dusting of lemon zest and handful of shredded basil or you can make your own). You can serve it on stirato or focaccia, but if you’re feeling sinister might we recommend a triple-decker with slices of your local grocery store’s most pillowy version of Italian bread, toasted.
  5.  Go Full Holiday Roast: Place your Porketta on a rack in a large roasting pan, uncovered. Begin roasting the Porketta at 375 while you prepare your other ingredients. Wash fingerling potatoes or quarter them, quarter fennel, rutabaga, and or sweet potatoes. Toss all with olive oil and light salt (the Porketta is going to help flavor them all) and arrange them in the now-hot roaster when they’re ready (make sure you take the roaster out of the oven to accomplish this – safety first!). Cook all until vegetables are soft – around 45 minutes to an hour. Serve with something green, like Swiss chard, Brussels sprouts, or green beans. Buon appetito!

 

 

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