Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Happy Scrapple Day

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By Diane Forrest,

As I was checking out the assignment sheet I see that today is National Scrapple Day.  Well of course I thought it was a typo, I’m sure it was supposed to be national Scrabble Day.  Scrapple isn't even a word, right?   Wrong!  Scrapple is chopped or ground pork and cornmeal mush, cooked and shaped in a loaf pan, cooled, then sliced and browned in butter to serve. It is a true American specialty of the Pennsylvania Dutch (who called it ponhaws or pawnhaus). It was originally made from ‘scraps' of pork.  Who knew?

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Scrapple is arguably the first pork food made in America, more common in the north.  Locals describe it as being every part of the pig but the oink.  Scrapple is typically cut into quarter-inch to three-quarter-inch slices, and pan-fried until browned to form a crust. It is sometimes first coated with flour. It may be fried in butter or oil and is sometimes deep-fried. Scrapple can also be broiled; this is a good cooking method for those who like their scrapple crispy.

If you are feeling adventurous today, I have included a recipe for making Scrapple from Mastercook.  Give it a try and have a Happy Scrapple Day.

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Philadelphia Scrapple

  • 4 Pigs knuckles
  • 1 Pound lean pork
  • 1 lg Onion, stuck with 3 whole Cloves
  • 3 qt Water
  • 1 1/2 t Salt
  • 1 T Pepper
  • 1 t Ground sage
  • 3 c Cormeal

All-purpose flour, for Dredging sliced scrapple
Butter, back fat or Vegetable oil for frying

  • Place pig’s knuckles in a large pot; add pork, onion, and water.  Cook slowly, covered, for 2 1/2 hours; drain, reserve broth.
  • Chill meat and remove fat; separate meat from bones. Chop meat.
  • Place meat in a kettle with 2 qts of the reserved broth.  Add salt, pepper and sage; bring to a boil combine cornmeal with remaining 1 qt of reserved broth and stir into boiling mixture. 
  • Cook over medium heat until thickened, stirring constantly.  Cover and cook over very low heat; stir again after 20 minutes.
  • Pour into 2 (9-by-5-by-3-inch) loaf pans.  Cool and chill overnight.  Cut into slices, coat with flour and brown in butter or bacon fat.  Serve hot with fruit for a hearty breakfast.

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