Cajun Smoked Coppa
Updated: Jan 24, 2020
In the past, I have blogged about curing Coppa. This recipe kicks it up a notch. Chris and I were in NYC at Murray's Cheese when I saw Smoked Coppa. Since loving the sample they gave us, I figured to duplicate the recipe. In order to do this I needed to be able to cold smoke my coppa before the dry cure stage. A little investigation lead me to purchase a cold smoking tube. You can easily find them for sale on the internet. Basically you fill a tube with wood pellets, lite the tube on fire and when the first section of pellets are lit, blow out the fire and let it smoke. This smoking tube is then placed alongside your coppa on a covered grill without any other fire source. In a couple of hours you have a beautiful cold smoke coppa! The picture below shows the final results and the recipe follows.
This recipe uses your favorite cajun spice blend as a final coating and the result was excellent. The picture above shows the final Coppa. I used a no salt version of Emeril's Essence(search online for the recipe and just leave out the salt), just a decent amount of heat even though you can see the Coppa is completely covered. The interior fat is a great contrast for the smoky pork flavor.
Some specifics that were left out of the recipe are as follows: I smoked the coppa for 3 hours during a cold day (40 Degrees F). I would not make this recipe in mid summer because of the outside temperature is too warm. The coppa was cured for 2 days at 80% humidity and 64 degrees temperature. For the rest of the 4 week curing time, my curing fridge was set at 68.5% humidity and 56.5 degree temperature. The starting weight of the Coppa was 2 lbs 7 oz. and the final product was 1 lb 9 oz. Total weight loss of 14 oz.
1 Porcelet Collar
Salt Free Cajun Spice Blend (I use Emeril's Essence)
1. Weigh your collar so you know how long to cure it.
2. Dredge the coppa/collar completely in kosher salt and put into a zip-lock bag. Add cracked peppercorns (about 1 tablespoon) and seal the bag removing the air from it as best you can.
3. Place the bag on a baking sheet and put a second baking sheet on top of the bag. Place about 8 pounds of weight on the top baking sheet to compress the coppa. Put it all in the refrigerator for 1 day for each 2 pounds. If your coppa is less than 2 pounds, cure it for less than 1 day. Timing is fairly important if you do not want an overly salty end result. For my weights, I use 3 cast iron pans.
4. Rinse the Coppa to remove all the curing salt. Setup your cold smoke grill or smoker with the pellet smoke tube. Place the coppa in the smoker for 3 hours.
5. Weigh the coppa once again. This weight will be the baseline so you can tell when it has hung to dry long enough.
6. Completely coat the coppa with the cajun spice. If your coppa is not tied, tie it up like a roast for hanging in the drying chamber. The D'artagnan porcelet collar comes pre-tied.
7. Hang in the drying chamber for 4 to 6 weeks, or until it has lost 30% of its weight.
8. Slice thin and enjoy.