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Garth Brown |

In my last post I detailed a few days worth of food. I ate "bacon" during that time, and only just realized that I failed to explain that technically I did not eat bacon. I ate cured jowls, sliced thin and fried the way most people prepare bacon. It tastes just like bacon, though the shape and sometimes the texture differ slightly. The other thing about jowls is the occasional slice of embedded parotid (salivary) gland. Our butcher removed most of the glands but didn't get 100% of them.

A bit over a year ago I had some "jowl bacon" from pigs raised by somebody else. Those slices were almost pure fat with a gossamer sort of haze of meat in them. The jowl bacon from my pigs is much meatier and the fat:meat ratio is much more favorable.

I don't know if this is solely due to feed since I fed a low calorie density ration. There could be a genetic component too since some breeds of pig are much more prone to fattening than others. I have some completely unrelated pigs going to slaughter later in the summer, so I'm curious about how their cuts will look compared to the pigs I've already sent.

Writing "jowl" a bunch of times just now makes me think there is something funny about the word... Jowl, jowl, jowl, jowl. Perhaps the fact that it's a single syllable even though it takes as long to say as a many two syllable words... There might be something going on with the "J" too since so few English words begin with J.


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