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Where to buy Pigs Blood?

  • fr1p Jun 23, 2009 04:32 PM
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Maybe an odd question but:

I'm interested in trying my hand at making some from-scratch blood pudding and blood sausages. Being new to the Boston area (I live in Cambridge, and closer is better) I have no idea where to turn. There seems to be a lack of full-service, any-part-of-the-animal butcher shops where I live, most are just butcher stalls in large grocery stores.

Does anyone know where I can buy farm fresh blood (and accompanying meat cuts) close to Cambridge? In-city is better as I share a car and only have access to the T most of the time, but I could drive if need be.

Any ideas?

Thanks!

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  1. Tough call as I don't know of anyone actually slaughtering pigs in the immediate Boston area. There are places in Chinatown that sell already coagulated pigs blood, but that would not do for what you want. Gotta think this is pretty trickey to track down anywhere inside 128.

    2 Replies
    1. re: StriperGuy

      A chinatown market seems the best bet... I don't know about the markets inChinatown Boston, but here in central NJ all of the larger Asian markets seem to carry it, both cooked and uncooked. A large Chinese market with good turnaround should have it, it would seem.

      1. re: The Professor

        All the Chinese markets that sell it offer it already coagulated - not as fresh liquid blood. I think the OP's best bet may be to have ask a local butcher to reserve it.

    2. Do you guys know of any places that might deliver it? That's odd, i know, but maybe some meat/butcher co-op?

      7 Replies
      1. re: fr1p

        Most Vietnamese market in Dorchester carry fresh pig blood in coagulated form..

        1. re: joebloe

          It is definitely not close by, but I have gotten Pig's blood from Blood Farm and Groton MA. You need to call ahead to find out the day they are butchering and reserve some as they give most of it to biologists. It helps in the final product if you ask them not add salt to the blood as that is their standard practice. If you do go, they also sell some great other products like veal heart, tongue etc. Also if you are going to make Boudin Noir they sell nice fat back as well. Within Cambridge, you may want to talk to the guys at Savenor's. They order from D'artagnan who also sells pig blood. You will be able to get it a lot cheaper at Blood Farm. They will probably sell you a gallon or 2 for about 10 bucks. Blood freezes very well. Good luck!! Playing with blood can be a little intimidating at first but once you get the hang of it it is pretty east. Just remember to poach your sausage very gently when you first set the blood. You will also need a good funnel.

          1. re: iloveporkbelly

            iloveporkbelly,

            Thank you for the advice!! What's the standard practice for blood sausage prep? Do I need to cook the blood somehow first or can I go ahead and add it to whatever ingredients/thickeners I want in the casing and then just cook the sausage as is?

            Thank you!

            1. re: fr1p

              As always there are various ways to make different kinds of blood sausage. For traditional boudin noir-the french version- you add your extra ingredients into the blood and then funnel the mix into the sausage with the blood still raw. You then twist your links, and gently poach them in a court-bouillon which is an aromatic broth with onion, herbs peppercorn etc. They will set up with the blood coagulating in the sausage. you then want to let me dry in a refrigerated space.
              For British/Irish style you will want to mix your blood with generally oatmeal, spices such as mace, cayenne, or mace as well as suet or fat back. You then fill the sausage with this mixture and again poach the links for 5-10 minutes in a very low water bath.

              Here is a great link with diagrams and such for traditional french Boudin.

              http://www.hertzmann.com/articles/200...
              and the related article.
              http://www.hertzmann.com/articles/200...

              Good luck and enjoy. You might want to visit the local farmer's markets in cambridge and talk with some of the meat purveyors. I have had great luck in asking in advance for various offal for an upcoming market. Blood might be a little more difficult. Cheers

              1. re: iloveporkbelly

                blood will coagulate in a couple of hours, that's my experience from yrs ago in Asia, if you ask a local butcher to get it for you, you may still get it coagulated.
                May be better to get it from a farm directly, & have everything else ready before you go pick up the blood.
                hope that helps.

            2. re: iloveporkbelly

              Savenor's ended up charging me $56 for a single gallon, that after they gave me a much lower quote. Do you think I got ripped off? Frankly I was a little pissed. It's a gallon of blood (pasteurized) for goodness sake, not a stack of Kobe Beef.

              1. re: fr1p

                It seems high, may be check with pete & jen's backyard bird in concord, it's a organic farm, they have some pigs, see if they will sell you some

        2. Saw what I think was big tray of coagulated pigs blood at Battambang Market in Lowell a few weeks ago.

          1 Reply
          1. re: cassis

            Coagulated blood is NOT what the OP is looking for.

          2. I'm always sort of surprised by the lack of full/fresh butchers in Boston. Most big cities boast several good ones, but it's like Boston exists in some twilight realm in which the city is not -quite- large enough to support special butchery shops, but it a little too big to offer town-fresh butcher options nearby.

            Does anyone know of any Butcher Co-Ops, aka slaughter-clubs, where farms will bring in fresh meats/offal and deliver them to neighborhoods that band together to purchase a certain quantity?

            In the meantime, I'll try calling Saveno's as suggested, see what they have to say!

            1 Reply
            1. re: fr1p

              The issue here is not butchers, but in general there are dwindling numbers of slaughterhouses in the country. Blood Farm is a USDA slaughterhouse, so your best bet for this. There are full service butchers who bring in whole sides of beef, pork, etc for breaking down. For instance Lionette's Market brings in local pigs, lamb, and beef regularly for breaking down. However, they would still have to coordinate with the farmer's slaughterhouse to get your blood for you, but it might be possible. Sulmona is an example of another butcher which buys sides instead/in addition to primal cuts.

              There are local meat CSAs and if you search nearby craigslist postings (NH, VT, etc) people that regularly offer sides of beef/pork and so on, but don't know of any butcher co-ops.
              http://www.nofamass.org/programs/csa/...

            2. Just saw that there's a pork farmer vendor at the Waltham farmer's market this year - Burnshirt Family Farm (http://www.burnshirtvalleyfarm.com/). You might give them a buzz and see if they can help you out. The market is Sat, 9:30-2:30 in Waltham Ctr. (accessible via 70 bus from Cambridge/Watertown if you're w/o car on market day).

              1. Just a follow up, for pigs blood in Cambridge, you can get it at: Savenors, as our friend suggested. They can special order it within a week.

                7 Replies
                1. re: fr1p

                  That's great. Now all you have me thinking about is boudin noir. Just had some great blood sausage in Budapest. Might have to make some of my own soon. Let us know how it turns out for you.

                  1. re: iloveporkbelly

                    OK, so I just got a call from the butcher saying my blood came in, but man did I ever get STICKER SHOCK.

                    $56 for ONE gallon of pasteurized pigs blood.

                    Does anyone else have experience with this pricing? I mean, $56 bucks?? When I talked to a counter rep in the store, he estimated 10-15 bucks for the gallon. $56 seems ridiculously high. Granted, that'll make a lot of blood sausage once I add all the fillers, but does that seem excessively high to anyone else for blood, which is, after all, a byproduct of slaughter??

                    I'm going to go fetch it tomorrow, but man, at that price.... I guess I was expecting much much cheaper. I mean, how many blood sausages could I just buy straight out for $56.... quite a few i'd imagine.

                    Thoughts?

                    1. re: fr1p

                      That is total robbery. I would call back and say you were quoted $15.

                      1. re: StriperGuy

                        Do you think it is robbery because the quote was off, or is that actually a very high price for pigs blood? If you think they are overcharging and it should be cheaper, let me know, I would -love- to have a word with them.

                        1. re: fr1p

                          I think it is robbery cause they did not honor their quote AND because there is NO WAY a gallon of pig blood should cost that much. Ridiculous.

                          Pig's blood is after all essentially offal that is not often used in the U.S. This should be the cheapest of cheap. Now you are talking Savenor's so... I could see $20 or $30, but $56 is just absurd.

                          1. re: StriperGuy

                            Excuse me, but I know what coagulated and frozen blood is, and I bought some and made dinuguan which is a pork stew wwith blood. It came frozen and i just placed the container in a hot water vath and let it thaw out and presto, blood in liquid form

                            1. re: neposter

                              Gotcha, cool. Most of the pork blood I see at the area Asian markets is the congealed stuff. Good to know you can get frozen liquid.

                2. we just bought some at Kam Man in quincy, available in pig and beef this weekend

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: neposter

                    At Kam Man it is usually already congealed. Not what the OP is looking for.

                  2. I saw it frozen at Kam Man; in blood bags in the open cases. It just said "pig blood" on the label.

                    1. I'm going to call blood farm and see what they would quote for a gallon.

                      Maybe it was expensive because it was pasteurized?

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: fr1p

                        I paid about 10 dollars for 2 gallons at Blood Farm. Like I said, it is all a little off the cuff there when it comes to blood and you need to drive out on a slaughter day. Good luck