Happy Valentine’s Day

I have been saving this classic Canadian ad from the Saskatchewan Pork Council for just the right moment.  With Valentine’s Day coming up this weekend, now is that moment…

The obvious question is, “Do they have double entendres in Canada?”  I’ll let our legions of Canadian readers write in to answer that question.  At any rate, Eric, thanks for alerting me to this sign and allowing me to embargo it for months before sharing it.  It certainly captures the spirit of Valentine’s Day.

Porky’s Pulpit: “bbq pulled shreds” rant

I recently lived my nightmare.  I ate–“consumed” is a more appropriately clinical term given I did it only in the name of research–most of a package of “Certified Vegan” tofucue.  (You can pronounce that last word however you see fit.)  I will return to the scene of the crime soon to give you a full report on how this vile product tasted (preview: vile), but today’s post focuses on the packaging.

The Front of the Box
Where to begin?  Perhaps the name itself–“bbq pulled shreds.”  Shreds of what? Pulled what? And don’t think the small print “meat-free” above the word “bbq” gives me any comfort.  Plus, aren’t the words “pulled” and “shreds” redundant?

Was the budget too small to afford paying for capital letters on the packaging?  must every word be written in lower case like a jr high text msg? omg luv u tofu, lol!

Why do the words “contains no poultry” appear at the bottom of the picture?  You’ve already flaunted that you’re meat-free.  Is this small print poultry-free message supposed to make me happy?  Or is it an apology?  If so, why apologize simply that you’re poultry-free?  You look like you’re pretending Continue reading

First Toyotas, Now Pork

Achtung baby!

A North Carolina company is following in Toyota’s footsteps with a massive recall of a life endangering product.  In this case, the recall has nothing to do with defective gas pedals and isn’t actually that massive.  According to this article, The Murphy House of Louisburg is recalling roughly 2,850 pounds of pork barbecue.  The company’s pre-packaged five-pound buckets o’ ‘cue “may contain an undeclared allergen, soy flour,” according to findings by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service.

Consider this recall further proof that soy has no business within 25 yards of barbecue.

As a slight aside, you should sleep easier knowing that U.S. Department of Agriculture staff–when not gorging on five-pound buckets of pork–have created a food safety website called Ask Karen.  The website features a “virtual representative ” named (can you guess?) Karen who “is a knowledge base with information for consumers about preventing foodborne illness, safe food handling and storage, and safe preparation of meat, poultry, and egg products.”

Not only is Karen incredibly knowledgeable about food safety, but she is a looker too.  Nothing is hotter than pillow talk about the safe preparation of meat, poultry, and egg produucts, right?  More from me another day, I’ve got an e-date with Karen to get to…

Porky’s Pulpit: Barbecue “Evolution”

When the Private Equity Beat blog of the Wall Street Journal features a post about barbecue, it’s worth reading.  And they posted a good one toward the end of 2009.  In “Debating Evolution – Barbecue Evolution, That Is,” WSJ blogger Josh Beckerman, who admits he is no dyed-in-the-pig-wool barbecue fundamentalist, nonetheless takes a creationist-worthy stand against the so-called “evolution” of ‘cue. 

What has Beckerman riled up?  This press release entitled “The Barbecue Evolution” that was put out by a large company called Sadler’s.  The press release says, in part: “BBQ isn’t just for backyard parties anymore. Sophisticated barbecue was named a Top 10 Flavor Trend in 2009 by Flavor & The Menu and is predicted to go even more upscale with ethnic and regional flavors in 2010… .”

Beckerman responds to Sadler’s slick press release with fire and brimstone worthy of, well, a BBQ Jew, writing that he has no problem with the concept of mass-produced pit-smoked ‘cue but he’s “not so sure about brisket bow-tie pasta, one of the recipes – along with pulled pork Asian wraps and shaved pork quesadillas – that the company offers to ‘customers who want to experiment with upscale barbecue trends.'”  

He continues his sermon, offering, “Nor do we completely agree that ‘mango salsa or chipotle sauces are ideal compliments to the hardwood flavors of authentic, pit-smoked barbecue meats.’  Although fusion has its place in the world of food, we think barbecue may not be that place.” 

Preach it, Beckerman!

Swine Flu in Your ‘Cue? Delicious!

If a newspaper called the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer is to be believed, there is no risk of contracting swine flu from eating barbecue or other pig meat. If you don’t trust anything claimed by papers with the word “Enquirer” in the title, then maybe you’ll trust this article from the Los Angeles Times.  If you don’t trust anything from L.A. either (or if you just noticed that the Los Angeles Times ran that same Ledger-Enquirer story), well, we don’t blame you for that.  Nonetheless, it does appear that pork is safe to eat even if the pig it came from had a 105 degree fever and was vomiting a few days before he landed, chopped and sauced, on your plate.  Does that make you hungry for a plate of swine flu ‘cue?

Happy Meat Week

Happy Meat Week everyone!  Meat Week is one of the greatest ideas ever–ranking right up there with cooking whole hog over coals and the invention of vinegar–but the only North Carolina chapter is in Charlotte.  Obviously folks need to step up and start other NC chapters by next year.  Who’s going to take on this awesome responsibility? I call not it… but I will be happy to participate.