Feeds

Post-pub nosh deathmatch: Souse versus scrapple

El Reg mixes it up with the Pennsylvania Dutch

High performance access to file storage

With the souse set for serving, we got stuck into scrapple, which is a mush of ground pork and cornmeal in loaf form, served as fried slices.

Our scrapple uses shoulder of pork ("pork butt" in the US) as the meaty heart of the recipe. If you want to get old school, then ask your butcher for hog offal, and throw the head, heart lungs, liver, etc, into the pot to create your scrapple base.

Here's the full roster of requirements...

The ingredients required for scrapple

...which comprise:

  • 1.5kg pork shoulder
  • 5g ground black pepper
  • 8-10 cloves
  • 5g dried sage
  • 20g salt
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 500g cornmeal

Predictably, getting our hands on a proper coarse cornmeal proved impossible hereabouts, so we're obliged to Jude Karabus in El Reg's London bureau for arranging an emergency airlift of polenta, which worked just fine.

Here's the proof, in our step-by-step photo guide:

The six steps in preparing scrapple

A couple of points. It's important to make sure the cornmeal mush is pretty stiff before you stick in the meat. The spoon should stand up in it, although it shouldn't be too thick. If if does look like it's starting to display the properties of drying concrete, stick in a bit more broth.

The seasoning is vital in scrapple. Check your brew and add extra to taste. You might like to throw in some thyme and nutmeg to the boiling broth, and we even considered adding a smidge of chilli powder, before deciding to hold on that for a future scrapple experiment.

It's worth lining the sides of the cake tin with greaseproof paper, as we did, since it helps get the scrapple out, after a night of solidification in the fridge:

Katarina presents the finished scrapple

With our magnificent loaf ready to roll, we hit Bar Almanzor, in my local town of El Barco de Avila, where the usual tasting panel had already quaffed several ales in anticipation of the impending deathmatch.

The verdict on souse can be summarised as follows: Spaniards don't like cold tongue action. Local builder Fernando's face says it all:

Fernando singularly unimpressed with souse

"It'd probably be fine if it was hot," he grimaced, ignoring my attempt to explain the effect of a microwave oven on the gelatin.

In fact, souse is delicious on a slice of toast, although I'm prepared to concede it's probably not to everyone's taste, and certainly won't be gracing Fernando's plate again in the near, or indeed distant, future.

It's safe to say, though, he'd neck another platter of scrapple at the drop of a hat, as would his missus Lourdes and bar owner Juanjo:

Fernando, Lourdes and Juanjo get stuck into the scrapple

Likewise, my daughter Katarina didn't take much persuading to get stuck in with a fork:

Katarina and Lourdes assault the scrapple

The result of this deathmatch is pretty clear, then, although to my mind both recipes offer excellent post-pub fare, once you done the legwork.

Souse has the advantage of being available for immediate consumption, while you actually have to go to the bother of frying scrapple, if you can manage that in a sozzled state without torching the kitchen.

A safer option is to reserve your scrapple for the hangover breakfast, which is exactly what I did. Delicious...

A hearty breakfast of scrapple, fried egg on toast, bacon, sausage and fried mushrooms

For the record, the above platter boasts a special treat: fried Boletus edulis - the cep, or penny bun mushroom. Thanks to Tito, he of Bar Tito and our Paper aircraft Released Into Space (PARIS) mission, for donating a couple for my post-post-pub-deathmatch fry-up. ®

Bootnote

If you'd like to nominate your favourite nosh for a future deathmatch, we welcome suggestions here.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
Solar-powered aircraft unveiled for round-the-world flight
It's going to be a slow and sleepy flight for the pilots
Russian deputy PM: 'We are coming to the Moon FOREVER'
Plans to annex Earth's satellite with permanent base by 2030
LOHAN's Punch and Judy show relaunches Thursday
Weather looking good for second pop at test flights
Saturn spotted spawning new FEMTO-MOON
Icy 'Peggy' looks to be leaving the outer rings
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Curiosity finds not-very-Australian-shaped rock on Mars
File under 'messianic pastries' and move on, people
Top Secret US payload launched into space successfully
Clandestine NRO spacecraft sets off on its unknown mission
Get your MOON GEAR: Auction to feature Space Race memorabilia
Keepsakes from early NASA, Soviet programs up for bids
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.