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Fresh Pork Buying Guide
Pork is not only delicious, but it is also highly nutritious. It is a good source of nutrients like thiamine, niacin and riboflavin and vitamin B6, as well as zinc and potassium. If all those healthy things have inspired you to buy some fresh pork, here's what to look out for.
The most common cuts on sale are leg, shoulder, belly and loin. Generally, pork is much leaner than it used to be but if you're on a health kick, the leanest cuts tend to be from the loin. Surprisingly, these cuts are up there with skinless chicken breast in percentage of fat, but with a fuller flavour and much more succulence.
Light red to cherry red meat is the colour to look for, with slight fat marbling through the meat for enhanced flavour. Pale or white flesh is not good, especially if it is sitting in any form of liquid, as this suggests the meat has been stored too long, or is of dubious origin. Free-range pork should always be on the shopping list; this tells you that animal welfare was a priority for the producer, and that the flavour will also be optimal. In summary, if the meat looks pale, soft and spongy, give it a miss.
Finally, to the fat. This is vital info for cracking lovers! Look for fat that is white to creamy in colour. Anything darker is no good, as are dark spots on the fat. You want a perfectly blemish-free layer of white fat, which will eventually become super crackling.