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For lovers of all things dry cured, award-winning chef, owner of Charlito’s Cocina, and creator of charcuterie Charles Wekselbaum has written an unconventional entry-level guide to the process. Drawing on his Cuban-Jewish background and inspired by flavors from Asia to Italy, “Charlito” includes recipes for pork and beef salami, dry-cured whole muscles like prosciutto and bresaola, and more unusual seafood and vegan options made from salmon, tuna, figs, cucumbers, and more. He provides instructions for easily constructing your drying and fermentation chamber, putting together the perfect charcuterie board, pairing wines and beers with the finished product, and recipes to implement your favorite dry-cured ingredients. With information on everything from sourcing your materials through plating your dish, home chefs of all levels can enjoy their own dry-cured delicacies without being intimidated.
Charles Wekselbaum, better known by his childhood nickname, Charlito, owns Charlito's Cocina, a producer of high-quality, all-natural salamis. From the traditional (campo seco) to the wildly unconventional (vegan fig salami), his products combine old-world tradition with innovation. He studied at the French Culinary Institute and has traveled to Spain and Italy to learn traditional methods of dry curing. Now, Charlito's Cocina operates out of manufacturing facilities in central NJ and upstate NY, and is in the process of building a state-of-the-art facility in Durham, NC. Charles has been the face of the New York Fancy Food Show, and has been profiled by Food and Wine magazine, Serious Eats, Food Curated, Starchefs, Time Out New York, The New York Times, and more. His black truffle salami was featured as one of Oprah's favorite things (2012), he has been featured in the Real Simple gift guide, and his Beer Salami is a 2014 Good Food award winner.