Thursday, November 6, 2014

Introducing Ranch Friend and Food Writer Nick Benard

We’re excited to introduce a ranch friend, Nick Benard, as a new member of the North Woods Ranch community.  Starting this month, Nick will be contributing to our blog by writing about his favorite recipes and culinary adventures with North Woods Ranch beef and pork.
Nick has a lifelong passion for food and writing. He spent nine years working in the specialty food industry at a cheese importing company.  Today, he works at the iconic Nittany Lion Inn at the Penn State University, where Nick handles their in-house curing, sausage making, and charcuterie.  In between, Nick has worked to learn as much as possible about food and the process behind traditional, artisan foods.  This has taken him to visiting artisanal cheese makers from Wisconsin to the mountains of Switzerland.  

On the meat side of things, Nick spent a week shadowing the charcuterie specialists at the Underground Meat Collective in Madison, Wisconsin.  He also participated in Mosefund Farm’s Pigstock, a three day on-farm workshop of slaughtering a Mangalitsa pig, cleaning and preparing the offal, and seam butchering the carcass, all under the watchful eye of Christoph Wiesner, Butcher and President of the Austrian Mangalitsa Breeders’ Association. Nick is an avid cook book reader and enjoys writing about his own cooking experiences.
Nick with Two of Our Berkshire Hogs
Expect to see a range of new posts coming, using our Scottish Highland Cattle and Berkshire hogs. Blog posts will range from simple weeknight dinners to larger projects for home chefs looking to make their own bacon, kielbasa, pate, and ham featuring North Woods Ranch on his personal blog the Culinary Pen.  In the meantime, feel free to check out some of Nick’s past posts featuring North Woods Ranch on his personal blog.