I was really looking forward to see how this bresaola would turn out as its not your typical ‘wine bresaola’. Typically, wine bresaola uses a method of wet curing (brining), where the piece of meat is submerged in several litres of wine with salt in a non metallic container for a couple of weeks. Traditional wet cures involve soaking the meat in a brine solution. For me personally, when it comes to charcuterie I like to use dry curing. During dry curing the salt/curing salts dissolve slowly and penetrate the meat; it also cures the meat from the outside to the inside over a period of hours, days or weeks depending on size and thickness of the meat. After I made Hops Coppa I toyed around with the idea of infusing salts with different flavours which is when I decided to try Wine Salt Bresola (the Wine Salt process is in the previous post). Wine salt is infused with highly concentrated wine, so a little goes a long way!
1457g Angus beef top rump, excess fat trimmed (100%)
44g Course salt (3%)
3.6g Instacure #2 (0.25%)
36g Raw sugar (2.5%)
7g Cracked black pepper/course pepper (0.5%)
6g Freshly ground rosemary (0.4%)
6g Dried thyme (0.4%)
3-5 Juniper berries, coarsely crushed
(makes approx. 1020g finished product)
The ingredients used are shown as a percentage of the starting weight of the meat. I’ve noted the percentage next to each, so you can adjust what you will need based on the weight of your meat.
Weigh out the ingredients, then combine and grind them in a mortar and pestle or spice mill. Rub the cure and seasonings into the meat; massage in the seasoning mix, making sure you don’t miss any cuts or folds. Ensure that the cure is evenly distributed. I usually spend about a minute or two on this.
Place the meat and seasoning mix (including anything that may have fallen off after massaging) into a large zip-lock bag. Make sure to squeeze all of the air out and then seal the bag. Refrigerate for 8-15 days (depending on size/weight of meat). Turn the bag every 2-3 days to evenly redistribute the cure.
When the meat feels firm it is ready. Remove the meat from the zip-lock bag and gently rinse under cold water to remove any excess cure mix – you may still have some herbs left stuck to the meat which is fine. Pat dry with paper towel and leave to rest, uncovered, for 2-3 baking rack at room temperature (I just have mine sitting on the kitchen bench out of the sun).
Weigh your meat, record the weight and date; this will help you keep track of how the bresaola is progressing. Wrap the meat in muslin/cheese cloth and hang it for around 6-8 weeks, or until you have reached at least 30% weight loss.
Once fully cured, the bresaola should feel firm to touch with a slight give in the middle.
I was really happy with how this turned out, as I was anxious as I wasn’t sure if the wine salt would really make much of a difference. The bresaola had an amazing dark ruby red colour on the inside. It looks beautiful, smells great and tastes amazing!