Charcuterie by Michael Ruhlman

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gnatboy911

Meat Mopper
Original poster
Jan 4, 2017
281
96
Western, CO
Any of you guys on here have this book? Thoughts? I'm considering buying it, as it seems like a good guide and resouce for smoking and curing. Reviews on amazon are positive. I did some searching on the forum and found it referenced a few times but not too many thoughts on it as a cookbook/resource. I am very curious about the world of cured meats and would like to learn and try to make some.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393240053/?tag=smokingmeatforums-20

There is the link to the newest edition.

Thanks for your thoughts.
 
Any of you guys on here have this book? Thoughts? I'm considering buying it, as it seems like a good guide and resouce for smoking and curing. Reviews on amazon are positive. I did some searching on the forum and found it referenced a few times but not too many thoughts on it as a cookbook/resource. I am very curious about the world of cured meats and would like to learn and try to make some.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393240053/?tag=smokingmeatforums-20

There is the link to the newest edition.

Thanks for your thoughts.
His book is decent for the beginner. Read it good as i found it has some holes in some of the recipe descriptions.
 
Holes are what I'd be concerned about. A few amazon reviews mention the same thing. Being new to curing, I wouldn't know if something was missing or not.
 
This is another one worth looking into by Rytek Kutas:


There are some errors and omissions as well, but a good foundation nonetheless. I like the "Textbook" format of it.
 
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Holes are what I'd be concerned about. A few amazon reviews mention the same thing. Being new to curing, I wouldn't know if something was missing or not.
That's why it's a good idea to check your recipes & procedures with someone like Nepas.

He's been making sausage his whole life.

He won't steer you wrong!

Al
 
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This is another one worth looking into by Rytek Kutas:


There are some errors and omissions as well, but a good foundation nonetheless. I like the "Textbook" format of it.
Yes same thing there. Just starting i would suggest the Rytek book, user friendly. Rhulman is a bit more advanced.
 
Holes are what I'd be concerned about. A few amazon reviews mention the same thing. Being new to curing, I wouldn't know if something was missing or not.
gnat, morning......   FWIW, It's a good idea to ask, on the forum, of any recipe you find, whether or not it is safe....  Blogs, U-Tube videos, and books have some misprints...    Whether it be from folks that are not "up to date" on USDA recommendations, proof readers that don't know squat, or for what ever reason...   many folks on this forum are well versed on acceptable and safe food practices.... 
 
I have the book. I used it after I bought it, but not much after that. Has some errors indeed, but what p-ed me off is the fact that does not cover some basic recipes you would expect to find in a charcuterie book. You need to buy his 2nd book for that.

Also, my edition at least, does not have nice colour pictures of the products. Nice cover picture but that's all.

I would not buy the book again if it went missing.
 
Great info and advice guys, thank you very much. The book interested me as it was recommended by a hunter/writer I enjoy; Steven Rinella. Has a show called MeatEater, and several books/podcasts, etc.
 
I received the original edition of the book pre-publication in 2005. Like others have said, the book is a good introduction to the subject of charcuterie, but it has flaws. Most notably to me were the inconsistencies and outright contradictions of himself in the appropriate and safe use of curing agents.

A few years after I received the book, I happened to be at an event that Ruhlman was also attending. In a conversation with him, I asked about the inconsistencies and he rather cavalierly and defensively told me that all of the recipes in the book were Brian Polcyn's (his coauthor), and that they would review the subject when they did the updated edition. I can't verify that, and am not about to buy the updated edition to do so.

Bear in mind that Ruhlman's profession is that of a writer and author, not that as a chef or food preparation expert. As he did with Brian, he's collaborated with several other professional chefs in the publication of similar books, though on different food related subjects.
 
I have the book and have used it as a bible when I started down this path as it came highly recommended form this site and the other BBQ forum I frequent.

I have made many ,many items from his book with great success, along with the information I have read here and as mentioned above.

What are the errors that are in this book that anyone would/should be warned about? As mentioned in an above post, if you don't know its missing you don't know its missing.
 
Between Len Poli's site and SMF you don't need "no stinking book". Kidding. I have a few charcuterie books.
Thanks Atomic.  I'll check that site out, I've never heard of it before.

Thanks again to the other guys for responding...some great discussion here.

Nate.
 
Not sure what your looking for but here are 2 books by 2 brothers that are in-depth on sausage making and curing process but not beginners books I feel.

The 2 brothers Stanley Marianski and Adam Marianski.

Polish Sausages  -  Authentic Recipes and Instructions

Home Production of Quality Meats and Sausages

I just bought them off Amazon at Christmas 
 
Again I ask,

Several mention the errors in the book.

What are they?
 
Again I ask,

Several mention the errors in the book.

What are they?
- he has one recipe for both lardo and dry cured belly (air dried). First of all these two don't cure in the same way, should be treated separately. Second his recipe is : 28g of cure for 1.5kg meat/fat and 225g of salt for the same amount of meat. That is 1.86% cure , 15% salt. Would you eat that?
- his pancetta recipe also has too much cure 0.6%. And he thinks pancetta is not meant.to be eaten raw.
- his bacon recipe lists the same amount of cure mix (50g) for a belly piece between 3-5lb. On the same page 1/4 cup of cure mix is both 30g and 50g.
- drying time for bresaola in his recipe is 3weeks (too short)

I just picked these from the book this morning. There are more.

If you need a second source to error-proof the recipes what's the point of buying the book?
 
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I  have Marianski's "Home Production of Quality Meats and Sausages"(700 pages) and Rytek Kutas "Great Sausage Recipes"(225 pages).....

There's no way I can list the errors.....
 
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Thank you guys for your input.  I guess the old internet search is king these days.  I will save my Amazon gift card for something other than that book. (until maybe I'm a little more experienced and know whether a recipe is missing something or not...)

thanks again for the responses! (and other cook book recommendations)

nate.
 
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