It's been hog heaven for pork producers

US - Harry Ochs leans into his long butcher saw, slicing through the fly bone and then the flat back bone of the pork loin I'm buying to go with (this being the day before New Year's Eve) the sauerkraut I'll cook from White Oak Nursery in Strasburg and a handful of Dwain Livengood's defending-state-champion Yukon Gold potatoes.

Yes, he says, he too has noticed an uptick in the fortunes and certainly the flavor of pork. He slides his hand over the white collar of fat covering the loin. "Things go full circle."

Ochs is 77 now, presiding at his stand in the Reading Terminal Market in his signature flat, plaid cap and white apron, an observer for more than 60 of those years of the fads of food - no-fat, low-carb, whole-grain, some-more-fat.

This season has been, in a manner of speaking, the year of the pig - or at least the pig that's not in denial: It is not the pig's lot to be overly lean. And porkier pigs are enjoying a revival.

Even at Christmas, which is not normally a pork holiday, Ochs says crown roasts of pork were flying out of the case, outstripping the more traditional standing rib roasts and beef fillets.

A 16-rib crown roast, admittedly, goes for $68 - about half the price of your high-end rib roast. But it is also true that the porkier pork is darker and sweeter again, and juicy, and you can savor its old-time porky richness: "It's more tasty," Ochs says, "more delicious."

Source: Philadelphia Inquirer
calendar icon 5 January 2006
clock icon 2 minute read
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