Barbera Food Pairings
Recipe courtesy James Ablett, chef de cuisine, and Mark Berkner, chef/owner, Taste Restaurant, Plymouth, California
For the duck dogs
3½ pounds duck legs, fat removed, diced
1½ pounds pork butt, diced
1 ounce kosher salt
4 grams tint curing mix
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons Cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon mace
½ teaspoon allspice
1 tablespoon oregano
1½ tablespoons chopped thyme
2 tablespoons onion powder
2 large yellow onions, diced small
6 cloves garlic chopped
1 cup powdered milk
20 feet sheep casings
In a large mixing bowl, combine the meats, spices, salts, onion and garlic. Place in the freezer 2–3 hours, until partially frozen. Run the mixture through the fine blade of a meat grinder (should be ⅛ inch) into a large metal bowl set over an ice bath.
Place ground meat into an electric mixing bowl with paddle attachment. Add powdered milk, and mix at medium speed for 1 minute.
Make a small patty, cook to test seasonings, and adjust, if necessary.
Stuff the sausage mixture into the casings and hang in a refrigerator overnight so a pellicle forms.
Cold smoke at 80˚F for 3 hours. Cool on roasting racks.
Grill sausages until they reach an internal temperature of 155˚F.
Can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
Serve in a soft bun, topped with Cherry Mostarda. Makes 12 dogs.
For the mostarda
1 cup dried cherries
½ cup sugar
½ cup Champagne vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
3 tablespoons mixed rosemary, thyme and chive
Place the cherries, sugar, vinegar and ½ cup water in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally. Reduce the liquid until it’s jam-like, about 45 minutes. Remove from stove.
Transfer to a medium-sized mixing bowl and let cool. Fold in the mustards and herbs.
Serve with grilled chicken, roasted duck or pork. Refrigerate covered for up to a month.
Scott Harvey’s 2011J&S Reserve Barbera from Amador County ($35) is an opulent wine that’s big upfront and bright and fruity on the finish. It’s built to age, so decant it before serving to smooth out the woody and peppery notes, which will go beautifully with the flavors of spice and game.