27 Mar EATER: A Master Butcher Breaks Down 400-Pound Pigs Into Coppa and Salami
Our Prime Time hosts Brent Young and Ben Turley are big fans of New York’s Ends Meat — a butcher shop in Brooklyn’s Industry City that is serving what the duo thinks is the cities best salami. Behind the operation is John Ratliff, whose whole-animal ethos means he and his team are also crafting coppa, bresaola, pancetta, saucisson sec, and countless others in house.
“The one that’s the hardest 100 percent of the time is the coppa,” notes Ratliff, due to how little coppa (neck muscle) a 400-pound pig actually yields. “We get pigs that are 350 to 400 pounds, and we get 12 pounds of coppa.” Still, for Young and Turley, the star is the salami piccante — a variety that folds in bird’s eye chile and New Mexico chile, the latter an homage to Ratliff’s home state. “No one gets into whole-animal to make money,” notes fellow butcher Turley. “You do it because you care about something.”
They had never worked in a restaurant; her mother had never cooked outside the home. They said yes. (“They love me!” the younger Ms. Lee said.)