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Ingredients

Salad

  • As needed young greens
  • As needed celery leaves
  • As needed pea shoots
  • As needed herbs
  • As needed olive oil
  • As needed lemon juice

Maple Blood Cake

  • 4 cups pigs blood
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups oatmeal steel-cut
  • 2 cups pork fat finely diced
  • 1 large yellow onion finely chopped
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pepper freshly ground
  • 1 teaspoon allspice ground
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup

Lard Pie Crust

  • 3 oz butter chilled
  • 1 oz pork leaf lard rendered, chilled
  • 6 oz flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup ice water in a spray bottle
  • As needed egg wash

Pie Filling

  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 2 1/2 cups pork shoulder ground
  • 1 shallot shaved finely
  • 2 garlic shaved finely
  • 1/2 cup morel mushrooms washed, halved
  • 1/2 cup carrots oblique cut, blanched
  • 1/2 cup spring onions or pearl onions, halved and blanched
  • 1/2 cup Yukon gold potatoes medium dice, skin-on, blanched
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper ground
  • 1 3/4 cup pork stock hot
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup Maple Blood Cake

Method

  1. For the Maple Blood Cake: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease two glass or ceramic loaf pans and line with plastic wrap (if using metal pans, line with additional parchment to prevent any reactive flavors.) Bring 2½ cups of water to a simmer in a small saucepot. Dry-toast the oats in a sautoir for a few minutes over medium heat until they start to smell nutty. Add the hot water and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes until just tender, not mushy. Remove the cooked oats and cool completely. Using a stand mixer, whisk the blood and 1 tsp. salt until fully incorporated. Pour the blood through a fine sieve into a large bowl to remove any lumps. Add in the fat, onion, milk, pepper, allspice, maple syrup and remaining 1½ tsp. salt and stir to combine. Add the oatmeal and mix to combine. Divide the mixture between the two loaf pans, seal the plastic wrap, and cover with foil. Bake for 1 hour in a water bath until firm and the Blood Cakes have reached an internal temperature of 155°F. Remove from the oven and place a piece of foil-covered cardboard cut to fit the internal length and width of the loaf pan to press against the surface of the Blood Cake. Place a few cans on top to weigh and press the Blood Cakes. Refrigerate and cool completely 
  2. For the Lard Pie Crust: Place the butter and lard in a freezer for 15 minutes. When ready to use, cut both ingredients into small pieces. In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour and salt by pulsing 3-4 times. Add butter and pulse 5-6 times until the texture looks mealy. Add the lard and pulse another 3-4 times. Remove the lid of the food processor and spritz the surface of the mixture thoroughly with water. Replace lid and pulse 5 more times. Add more water and pulse again until the mixture holds together when squeezed. Place the mixture into a large zip-top bag, squeeze together until it forms a ball, and then press into a rounded disk. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes 
  3. For the Pie Filling: In a 2-quart saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the ground pork and sauté until fully cooked. Remove the pork with a slotted spoon and reserve. Add the shallot and garlic and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the morel mushrooms, carrots, and potatoes and sauté for a few minutes. When the vegetables are warmed through, deglaze with white wine and reduce slightly. Stir in the flour, salt and pepper until well blended. Allow the flour to cook for several minutes, as you would for a roux. Gradually add in the hot stock and cream, stirring to prevent lumps. Add back the cooked ground pork and simmer until bubbly and thickened. Taste, re-season as necessary, and remove from the heat. When the filling has cooled down, carefully fold in the Blood Cake, making sure not to break it apart too much 
  4. To assemble: Preheat the oven to 375°F. Roll out the Lard Pie Crust and punch out circles that are 6½-inch in diameter. You can either cut slits into the crusts or punch out a decorative shape to release stream during baking. Brush one side of the crust with egg wash. Spoon the Pie Filling mixture into individual 6” x 2” ramekins and top with a circle of crust, egg wash-side down. Press the egg wash against the ramekin to form a seal. Brush egg wash on the tops of the pie crusts and bake the ramekins for 15-25 minutes until completely cooked and nicely golden brown 
Matt Jennings, as presented at Pork Summit 2016. Published with permission of the author. All rights reserved.

To serve: Let the pies rest for 5 minutes before serving. Top with a salad of young greens, celery leaves, pea shoots and herbs, lightly dressed in olive oil and lemon juice