Here at The Thoroughly Wild Meat Company we are influenced by Italian cuisine and Italian butchery. However, most Italians would not recognise much of what we create here with our dry aged Beef, the 6-week black rib. For them 30-month old Beef is not on the menu, the choice is Vitello (veal) or Vitellone. And Vitellone is arriving here soon.
Most veal is produced from calves that are predominantly milk-fed, killed at around five or six months and are raised in barns and given access to the outside, but only on concrete.
Vitellone Beef is different. It is produced from older animals – around 10 months old. They have milk for three months and are then allowed out to pasture to graze. The meat is hung for around 10 days. It is slightly darker in colour than veal, but it still has very little fat and is unbelievably tender. However, the most important bit – flavour – it has a delicate beef flavour that we think puts it in a class of its own.
It is seasonal, and the cuts suit a lovely Summer lunch.
I was introduced to Salsicce by a friend & fellow stall-holder at The Bath Farmer’s Market (where you can find us most Saturdays) Manuele Di Vincenzo. He’s a Sicilian and he asked me to make a pork sausage to his recipe, a slightly vague recipe admittedly. But, you know, I’ve seen the movies. When a Sicilian asks me to do something I do it. Anyway, he loved them. I read more and learned more, and after my last visit to Italy refined the recipe. They are good, very good.
Salsicce contain no bread crumbs. They’re gluten free, which is a popular thing in this day and age. They are rich and delicious, remarkable really. The meat and fat is minced just once so they have a coarse, meaty texture. They are seasoned and made by hand.
Their provenance isn’t exactly Sicilian. You find them all over Italy, with regional recipe variations. Manuele’s have a little paprika with fennel seed and garlic. They are very popular. But I also make one with Parmigiano cheese, and another with oregano. They’re all excellent.
You should use these to cook with. Try this: sautée some onion, add the sausages, a splash of white wine & simmer. Serve with pan seared broccoli. You’ll be happy.