PeachFest Spotlight: Chef Hector of El Super Pan
Chef Hector is the founder of El Super Pan in Ponce City Market, bringing a Puerto Rican style to his cooking that is to die for. For PeachFest 2017, he is preparing an entire American Mulefoot pig, courtesy of the STAG Vets.
Find out why Chef Hector love heritage breed pigs and get a glimpse of what he might be cooking up for PeachFest 2017.
1. Why do you choose to work with heritage breed pigs over commodity pigs?
The overall flavor is much better. Most heritage farmers grow their animals in a natural state of grasslands and/or forest, so the flavor of their meat is a lot more flavorful and rich the true flavor of the animal.
It's not like "the other white meat" which is tasteless, full of hormones and antibiotics.
2. What is your favorite part of the pig to work with - and why?
Coming from Puerto Rico where we love pork and use every part, it's difficult to say which part is my favorite.
I love shoulder for its great distribution of intramuscular fat, it can be used in so many ways from sausage to cured and roasted.
When it comes to parts, I love the head with such great assortment of meats from cheeks to tongue and the luscious brain.
As far as inners I'm a huge fan of pig stomach. Not the belly, but the actual stomach, aka Hog Maules, I confit them and then finish them a ka plancha.
And let's not forget the skin either as Chicharon or slow roasted cuerito, my favorite!
3. When cooking with pork, what flavors and ingredients do you tend to gravitate towards?
When working with heritage pigs I like to taste the meat and then work on what it will compliment it. Every breed has is own characteristics but I tend to gravitate to the flavors of the Caribbean like oregano, garlic, cilantro, and allspice.