Scrapple- Pig Heaven?

Friday night was the start of making scrapple. One hog’s head plus half of another and two trotters were placed in our largest pot, covered with water and left on the wood stove to boil for hours. At first the odor was that of pungent boiled pork, but gradually the odor became less harsh and richer smelling. The meat was left to simmer all night and on Saturday morning boiled again before being placed out in the back hall to cool.

Saturday evening the bones and odd hard bits were scooped from the pot. The meat, skin, and soft tissues were set aside. The broth was strained back into the stock pot. Then the meat and skin were ground, the dogs eyeing me and hoping for tidbits to fall to the floor, which some did and which the dogs did lap up. Now the mixture was set back on the wood stove to boil again. Fresh sage, harvested from the herb garden was chopped and stirred in, along with some salt and ground pepper. Next to go in, and possibly the most important ingredient, were dried hot peppers from the garden. We had a good harvest of peppers this year- Czech Black, Long Red Cayenne, Jalapeno, and Thai. Nothing was measured of course. The spices were added until the broth just tasted right.

Next came the addition of cornmeal, mixed with cold water so it wouldn’t form lumps. Several pounds went in and were boiled until I could just barely stir it. Then a little bit more was tossed in for good measure, I didn’t want a soft batch like last year. Then while still hot, the mixture was ladled into all of our loaf pans, one sheet cake pan, and one muffin tin, before being set out in the back hall to cool overnight.

Sunday morning I cooked a test batch of scrapple. Crisp on the outside and somewhat chewy inside, spicy but not too hot, and a slight salty aftertaste. By the the end of breakfast it was deemed a success and a years supply went in the freezer.


  1. Phoebe Peckenham says:

    Can’t wait to have some at breakfast…looks delicious!

  2. Polly says:

    Me too! Can’t wait to have more. Typical Papa recipe “Nothing was measured of course.”

  3. Denise Slazas says:

    So Mary, how does it get cooked after cooling overnight? Do you just fry it in a cast iron skillet with butter? Do you serve anything in particular on the side traditionally? I’ve never had it.

    • Mary says:

      After it’s all made and wrapped, we freeze it. Then John puts it out to to semi-defrost overnight and slices it into 1/2 inch slices and fries on the cast iron griddle which is so well seasoned at this point that it doesn’t need any butter! Scrapple can be used in place of bacon or sausage, and it’s great with eggs and chard, or fried tomatoes!

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