A carnivore's love letter to one of the most versatile, affordable and tasty types of meat: pork.
After 30 years as a professional chef, Michael Olson knows how to get the most out of his food. These days, he's also a teacher and dinner-maker-in-chief, so he understands what home cooks are looking for when it's time to eat.
In Living High Off the Hog, Michael shares his wealth of knowledge and over 100 of his favorite pork recipes. First, he gives you a rundown on everything you need to know about pork--how to buy, store, butcher and prep various cuts, along with special sections on deli meats, charcuterie and BBQ. From there, he shares his must-have pantry items and most-used cooking techniques to set you up for success as you work through four extensive recipe chapters: The Deli Counter, Ground and Diced, Chops and Steaks and Roasts and Big Cuts. With recipes like Bacon Okonomiyaki, Caramelized Chili Pork with Peanuts & Lime, Schnitzel and Crispy Pork Belly, you'll find a huge variety of tastes and textures to explore. For special occasions, you can dig deep into the low-and-slow world of BBQ and experiment with one of his recipes for ribs, learn a new skill with a porchetta roast, or go hog wild and try your hand at roasting a whole pig.
With Michael's expert guidance, sense of humor and warm encouragement, you'll find recipes and learn techniques to cook familiar classics, as well as expand beyond your regular repertoire with exciting new ideas for all cuts of pork.
Whether he's cooking a laid-back meal with his wife, fellow chef Anna Olson, or entertaining a large group, Michael's main goal is to create simple yet delicious dishes from scratch, and enjoy them with those he loves. For Michael, that's what "living high off the hog" is--the good life of combining good food and great company around your table.
MICHAEL OLSON is a chef, educator, vintage deli slicer collector, BBQ aficionado, and bon vivant. He lives in the Niagara region of Ontario with his wife, Anna. He is a constant and enthusiastic student of food in addition to his role as a professor at the Niagara College Canadian Food and Wine Institute. He has been recognized for his contributions to the Canadian culinary scene and has co-authored two bestselling cookbooks: Inn On The Twenty Cookbook and Anna and Michael Olson Cook at Home.
“Walking culinary encyclopedia, meat whisperer and collector of vintage deli slicers, chef Michael Olson has poured more than 30 years of knowledge into a book dedicated entirely to the noble pig. It’s a wealth of wit and great ideas that goes far beyond sausage and ribs; Olson goes whole-hog with Crispy Pork Hocks, Bacon Okonomiyaki, and even a Whole Roast Beast.” —The Globe & Mail
“I can’t say what I like most about this book. It could be the comprehensive range of recipes, from sausage rolls to stir fries and whole roast pig; from curing and smoking to grilling, sautéing, braising and roasting. Or it could be the luscious food shots that accompany every recipe; or the tips that Michael has garnered from his 30+ years in the kitchen. But think it might be Michael’s voice—the way he writes like he’s talking to you. He’s the guide at the home cook’s shoulder, the friend who likes to crack little jokes and share his contagious enthusiasm for getting people around the table.” —Elizabeth Baird
“Michael Olson: the Winston Wolfe of our culinary circles, an iconic fixer imbued with passion, skills and resourcefulness. One of the few among us able to dismantle with proficient grace both the pig, and the meat slicer. This book is basted with delicious, inspiring recipes and tales from the larder. Don’t just get it for yourself, get it for someone else as well!” —Fred Morin and David McMillan, owners of Joe Beef
“If I was a pig I would want Chef Olson’s hands to be the ones to tend to my delicious end.” —Matty Matheson
“Michael Olson is an encyclopedia of food history and a lover of food science with a passion for teaching, crispy pig skin and Old School hip hop. He always has a trick, technique or little twist to make good food even better (yes, I mean the heat gun and citric acid for the chicharron!).” —Chuck Hughes
“I can verify that every single recipe in this book is spectacularly delicious, for the simple reason that I live with the author and have tested, nibbled, sampled and devoured my way through each and every dish.” —Anna Olson
“If you are a pork enthusiast, this will be your bible.” —Cassandra Anderton, BC Living
“With Michael's expert guidance, sense of humor and warm encouragement, you'll find recipes and learn techniques to cook familiar classics, as well as expand beyond your regular repertoire with exciting new ideas for all cuts of pork.” —Sask Pork