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Smoke Signals Blog
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Years from now, when you're reliving memories from holidays past, what will come to mind? Hopefully, scenes of the family gathered around the table, a crowded kitchen filled with delicious smells, and sounds of the football game coming through from the living room. It’s unlikely that memories of grocery shopping and meal preparation will stand out among the rest. Although, there’s quite a bit of that in our near future, isn’t there?
As a family-owned operation, we want you to spend more of your precious time on the things that matter most, during the holidays — and, always. To us, that means great conversation over the best food we can possibly prepare, shared with our very favorite people. If you’re on the same page, there are two ways for us to help you win your valuable time back during the most hectic time of year...
The first: preparation. We take the time to handcraft and slow smoke our hams to give you a tender, savory, and fully-cooked starting place. There’s not much more you need to do in order to serve something totally delicious to your family.
The second: We’ve compiled the most tempting holiday recipes with their very own plan for leftovers, so you can make the most of every minute and morsel.
From Cranberry-Glazed Ham to the Ultimate Scones
A glazed and glistening spiral-sliced ham at the center of the holiday table, paired with a tart, sweet cranberry glaze is always irresistible. That same smoky sweetness is the perfect addition to a batch of ham and cheese scones for the next morning’s breakfast. Buttery, flaky pastry, studded with bits of juicy ham and local cheddar melting into every nook and cranny…excuse us while we salivate.
For this route, we recommend an incredibly tender Applewood Smoked Spiral Sliced Ham because the blend of smoky and sweet is perfect for the main event and breakfast the next morning.
From Guinness-Brined Ham to Genius Breakfast Hash
The holidays are all about classic flavors, but that doesn’t mean you can’t put a new spin on an old favorite. Case in point: this Guinness-Brined Ham. We took an Applewood Smoked Maple Cured Ham and let it marinade in an Irish Stout and Brown Sugar brine for a few hours before popping it in the oven. The rich, malty stout is the perfect addition to the tender sweetness of the ham and it intensifies the smokiness.
Ham this flavorful deserves a second appearance. Try adding pieces to an Irish-inspired breakfast hash with crispy, salty bits of potatoes, topped with a fried egg or two.
From Ham and Biscuits to the Best Breakfast Sandwich
Sometimes it’s best to just let its bold flavor speak for itself. An Applewood Smoked Pit Ham is incredibly lean, insanely flavorful, and slowly smoked. It’s also boneless, so it’s easy to slice and pile high on homemade biscuits, and shared around the table.
Save a few of those biscuits from your holiday meal to create the ultimate ham and biscuit breakfast sandwich, to which we love to add a smear of maple horseradish mustard. Make it your own with an egg, a bit of melty cheese, or even a handful of spinach.
All of this said, the best way to save time? Stay focused on what really matters. Be present. Hug your family.
Happy holidays to you and yours.
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Up here in Claremont, New Hampshire, we roll steadily through the year with four very distinct seasons: Short green summers, even shorter autumns, long white winters, and unpredictable springtimes. Given how long our winters can be, we tend to treat “the holidays” as an unofficial fifth season when we dig out candles and hang lights pretty much everywhere.
Straight out of a storybook, the holidays in New England are jolly and jammed with sights, smells, and tastes that cannot be imitated during any other time of year. When it comes to home cooking, you can’t beat the tried-and-true recipes of the season.
Unless, you add bacon.
Call us predictable, but here at the smokehouse we’re dreaming up ways to make our holiday feasts just a smidge tastier and that exploration led us right here, to three smoky spins on our favorite holiday side dishes.
Here’s hoping that the fragrance and flavors in your home this season have guests singing your praises. We're confident they will. Bacon sort of does that to a person.
Classic Cornbread Dressing
Whether you cook your stuffing 'in-the-bird' or choose to bake it separately, you can’t go wrong with the addition of thick-cut bacon. Perhaps marinated in real maple syrup or encrusted with black pepper—certainly smoked for hours over hardwood embers —you’ll be adding a whole new dimension to your favorite recipe. We chose to run with a cornbread stuffing and we’d highly recommend it.
Maple-Glazed Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are tasty all on their own, but in this instance, they're the vessel that brings the bacon to our mouth. We topped off this recipe from EatingWell with pure maple syrup and our sugar-free bacon that’s been smoked low & slow. This year, we’re leaving the marshmallows behind and smothering our sweet potatoes in what we believe is something far superior. Bacon.
Bacon Brussel Sprouts
Chances are that you’ve seen this one before and if so, consider it a friendly reminder that flavor and quality make all the difference when you’re choosing to add bacon to your brussels. What exactly does “quality” mean? To us, it means starting with a lean pork belly we've carefully selected from our family farms and having our butchers hand-trim it to exacting specifications before double smoking the slabs at low temperatures to create bold flavor. We could go on about bacon for hours, but we’ll let you take a look at all of our bacon at your leisure.
Alright, go on then. Share your creations with us @northcountrysmokehouse.
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As trends towards better-for-you foods continue, foodservice professionals are responding by adding antibiotic-free proteins to their menu. Whether replacing traditionally cured meats entirely or peppering their plate with alternative options, North Country Smokehouse is here to help customers leverage the sustainable food movement by offering savory, smoked meats that are free from antibiotics, added growth hormones, nitrates, and nitrites.
According to a recent Consumer Reports survey the “no antibiotics” claim has become a selling point for many restaurant brands—and for good reason. Nearly 6 out of 10 people surveyed said they would be more likely to eat at a restaurant if the meat is raised without antibiotics, and would pay more for an “antibiotic-free” option.
OUR APPLEWOOD SMOKED
ANTIBIOTIC (ABF) BACON OFFERING INCLUDES:
#50631 - #5/20 - ABF APPLEWOOD SMOKED UNCURED BACON 13/15
#50670 - #5/20 - ABF APPLEWOOD SMOKED UNCURED BACON 14/18
#50671 - 6 LBS. 4 PER CASE. ABF APPLEWOOD SMOKED UNCURED SLAB
#50633 - 3-4 LBS. 5 P/CASE. ABF APPLEWOOD SMOKED BACON ENDS & PIECES
For more information about Antibiotic-free line of foodservice bacon products, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (603) 542-8323.
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It’s the most wonderful time of the year… Football Season. What’s not to love? You get to invite family & friends over and fill up on snacks. But that bowl of greasy chips and jar of queso dip just isn’t going to cut it if you’re a true flavor guru, and you don’t want to spend all day in the kitchen because, hello, the game is ON!
Upping your munchie game doesn’t have to require much effort. We spend hours handcrafting our meats and smoking them low and slow for big, intense flavor, so you can spend more time cheering on your favorite team. Our ideas all pass the Sports Snacking Golden Rule: Easy to grab, share, and savor. Check out some of our favorite ways to take Football Sunday classics and make them bold, smoky MVPs.
Pizza with a Punch
Sure, you could just order a pizza during half time and call it good. But if you’re hankering for big flavor, you’re going to have to go bigger and bolder. Try topping your pizza with some crispy, browned bits of Hot Italian Sausage, slivers of sweet fennel, and thinly sliced mushrooms. This hot, spicy sausage is slow-smoked and bursting with a peppery bite, and pairs well with all that gooey cheese.
Nachos are a football party classic... and for good reason. Crunchy, salty chips, topped with all your favorite fixings? Yes, please. But if you’re ready to take them to the next level (which you are, right?) we’ve got just the thing: our Natural Chorizo with Brandy sausage. The mild spice is rich and full-flavored, to give your nachos a smoky punch of flavor that’ll have you jumping off the couch to grab seconds. Brown some up, sprinkle it over a sheet pan full of your favorite tortilla chips, then top with cheese and bake them in the oven until the cheese is just melted and the chorizo is sizzling again. Be sure to get a bite before they disappear into your very own crowd of cheering fans.
Bold, Smoky Meat Bombs
It’s a cardinal rule of football snacks that they have to be easy to hold in one hand for maximum ease of plate-to-mouth action. Dips must be scoopable, crackers sturdy, and sandwiches easily palmed. But tiny sandwiches (done right) can have big flavor. Our favorite sliders are delicious little meat bombs filled with thinly sliced brisket, crunchy, bold blue cheese slaw, and a drizzle of dark ale glaze. Our Montreal-Style Smoked Beef Brisket is marinated in a brine of garlic, onion, and a special blend of spices then smoked low & slow over applewood embers to lock-in that deep, rich flavor. So whatever you top your sliders with, you can count on huge flavor and melt-in-your-mouth juiciness in every bite.
Once you’ve added North Country Smokehouse to your Football Sunday routine, there’s no going back. Stay smoky, football fans.