Food and Related Products

Buratta

Buratta is a fresh Italian cheese made from mozzarella and fresh cream.  The curds are softened in a hot whey solution, stretched like typical mozzarella, then a pouch is formed and filled with mozzarella scrap and fresh cream, then sealed at the top.  It is a typically found in southern Italy, considered an artisan style cheese, and when cut open a rich buttery cream is released.  The cheese is very volatile and does not last long at all, I have found it very hard to get the product on the west coast unless I am in California.  The cheese is best consumed with in 24 hours of being made and is considered past its prime after 48 hours.  This cheese goes great with risotto, fresh tomatoes and olive oil, or on olive oil toasted bread, aged balsamic, and sea salt.

Cured Egg Yolk

Grated cured egg yolk

Grated cured egg yolk

I doubt that you will find anything like this in “One Hundred Ways of Cooking Eggs“, a book originally published in 1892 by a chef with 25 years of experience, but I came across this gem of an idea in a magazine, Art Culinare about a year ago, and the base of the recipe was salt sugar and black pepper. The first time I made it I added fennel and realized that the egg yolk can pick up flavors very well. The finished product is firm, can be grated with a micro-plane, and it has a nice fatty richness that is full of flavor. I was blown away the first time that I made it, so much, that I had to make another batch. It is very simple and quick to assemble but it does take five weeks to cure, after it has been cured it can be held for a few weeks and used when needed. Cured egg yolk is best when shaved on salads or on top of fish, it is rich and heavy but the flavor is delicate.

Cured Egg Yolk

9ea Eggs

2C Kosher Salt

2C Sugar

1/2C Black Pepper

1/8C Crushed Red Pepper

1/4C Fennel Seed

  • Combine sugar and salt and mix well.
  • Combine remaining spice and grind into a coarse powder.
  • Add the ground spices to the salt and sugar mixture and blend well.

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  • Place 1/4 of the mix in a pan, you want to have about a quarter-inch of mix in the bottom of your pan.
  • Make an indent in your mix so your egg yolk has a place to land and not shift around.
  • Crack and separate the white from the yolk and place the yolk in the mix. Once all the yolks have been place in the curing mix, sprinkle the remaining curing mix carefully over the top.

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  • As you can see, there is one yolk that broke, it actually broke three times, must have been a bad landing spot or there was a piece of fennel sticking up that punctured it, so I left it to cure. Cover the pan with plastic and place in the refrigerator for five weeks, try not to disturb the eggs during the first week or so.

5 Weeks Later….

  • Dump the mixture out onto some parchment paper  and search through the salt for your egg yolks.

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  • Carefully brush off the excess salt and spices, try to get them as clean as possible, most of them will get grated with the rest of the yolk.

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  • Once cleaned you can reserve for at least two weeks under refrigeration.  When ready to use, grate using a micro-plane, on top of a salad or fish.

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The last time I used the cured egg yolk was on a bone marrow salad.  This batch of cured yolks have a nice fennel flavor, the pepper wasn’t as strong in terms of spice but you could taste the flavor of the pepper.