Winfield Farm Presents the Magic of Mangalitsa at the American Culinary Federation Chefs de Cuisine of California, Los Angeles Chapter
Cochon 555 was just the start of a whirlwind weekend in LA, promoting Winfield Mangalitsa pork!
Our great adventure began with a chance meeting with Chef Daniel Csotai, who visited Winfield Farm in search of backfat to make Hungarian bacon. A Hungarian who grew up with Mangalitsa pigs and is passionate about their flavor profile, Chef Daniel now also happens to be the secretary of the American Culinary Federation Chefs de Cuisine of California, Los Angeles Chapter. CCAC is a fraternal service organization and member of the national American Culinary Federation, the oldest and largest chef organization in America.
Chef Daniel agreed to help us reach out to the Los Angeles culinary community, introduced us to the CCAC education chair, and that’s how we wound up showcasing Winfield Mangalitsa at a special CCAC event – Bourbon and game tasting, hosted by CCAC member Chef Hugo Miranda at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel LAX. Except in this case, the “game” was Mangalitsa pork. More serendipitous, the event took place the day after Cochon 555, so after securing a reliable pig-sitter, we got to spend a night in LA – a mini-vacation.
Bruce opened his presentation with a history of Mangalitsa pigs, who nearly went extinct until Spanish prosciiutto-makers discovered that Mangalitsa is on par with famed Iberico de Bellota ham. In fact, Mangalitsas are the only other pig besides Iberico approved to be labeled “pata negra”.
Bruce told chefs how Winfield Farm Mangalitsas are raised – on pasture, with a non-GMO diet consisting of barley and organic produce, finished with acorns and walnuts. Barley preserves the quality of the luscious white fat, he said. Corn turns the fat rancid over time — not a good thing when you’re hanging a ham to dry cure for a couple of years.
Bruce’s nephew, chef Jensen Lorenzen, attended the event with us and extolled the attributes of Mangalitsa pork from a chef’s perspective. Mangalitsa’s prime value is for charcuterie, and several chefs asked technical questions about the curing process and sausage-making. Making sausage is another excellent thing to do with Mangalitsa fat, which is very high in oleic acid – the good fat!
Then came the tasting.
Chef Hugo Miranda has served as Executive Chef in some of the most high-end restaurants in the Los Angeles area. Adding to his experience as a high-end culinarian, Chef Miranda spent half a year in Costa Rica enhancing his culinary expertise in fine local Asian fusion cuisine. His creativity preparing Winfield Mangalitsa loin and rib roast was inspirational – a real tribute to the magic of Mangalitsa pork.
After the feast he revealed his secret: he marinated the roast in a brine with orange juice and herbs for two days! Chef Hugo’s Mangalitsa entrée was melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
His dessert – Mangalitsa bacon-infused bread pudding – was yummy also (although by that time we were so full we couldn’t finish it all).
Chef Hugo received an award from the CCAC for his commitment to the association; it was well deserved. He promised before the event, “Yes I’ll make sure we showcase Mangalitsa!!!” He was true to his word: he really did it !!
Thanks again, Chef Hugo! Everyone at the event loved Winfield Mangalitsa pork!