After frequently making Pancetta, i was keen to try Guanciale, an Italian cured meat made from pork cheek or jowl. It’s used in many traditional recipes like carbonara and has a slightly stronger flavour than Pancetta. Like Pancetta, it’s super simple to make at home and the fat gives a great depth of flavour to the dishes and sauces it is used in.

Details on how to make Pancetta can be found here: Pancetta recipe. I decided to cure it with the skin on, but you may prefer to remove it or ask the butcher to do so for you.

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  • 530 g pork cheek, skin on
  • 1.3 Cure No 2
  • 13 g Salt
  • 5 g Black pepper
  • 5 bay leaves, ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice


  • Mix all the salt cure ingredients and put in a zip lock freezer bag
  • Add the pork cheek to the bag and make sure it is covered in the cure all over
  • Leave this in the fridge for 7 days, turning it over every day (this is important)
  • After 7 days take the cheek out of the bag and rinse it and pat dry
  • Weigh the pork cheek and note this down
  • Hang the pork cheek in the fridge for 3 weeks or until it drops about 30% of its weight

How to eat it?


October 11, 2023
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