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smoked neckbones

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Once or twice a year I go in search of smoked pork neckbones.Every year it gets harder and harder.I scored some today at the local Ingle's.Getting them was about like getting into a Charleston speakeasy in 1925.You have to know somebody!

Its comforting to know that a mid-market grocer can sometimes do what Whole Foods can't.Can you imagine the look on their face if I'd asked for smoked neckbones?

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  1. One of the benefits of living in a small town in rural Georgia is that we have easy access to this type of product. I would recommend looking in some local places on the poor side of the tracks.

    Where I live Ingles is the big fancy store where the rich folks shop. : )

    1. I understand Publix is moving north out of Florida. They have a full range of smoked products. Hope there is one close enough to you.

      Call first to confirm. Each store is stocked based on the local clientel.

      1. In general, I've found "low end" grocery stores and stores catering to immigrant populations are the best sources of offal and other odd bits. Around here (central NC), Foodlion is widely available and generally a pretty good source for all parts of the pig. I didn't see neck bones yesterday, but they did have smoked pig tails.

        5 Replies
        1. re: mpjmph

          Disagree with you on Foodlion. I needed back fat to make sausages this past weekend and was unable to get it at Foodlion. The guy at the butcher counter said that they are not cutting their own pork and everything is coming in prepackaged. Needed to go to a Mexican Market for the item.

          1. re: chazzer

            Food Lion and most other grocers no longer cut their own meat, getting meat pre-packaged from the factories of Smithfield Meats. Their shoulders come in pre-trimmed. I've found fat back at my local Food Lion in Carrboro Plaza for $2 a pound. I found a better solution for back fat: the Farmer's Market. I can get it for the same $2/lb.
            Most folks who buy pork want chops or loins, ribs, etc. There's lots of fat and less desirable cuts (compare the price of jowls to pork belly) to be had at a fair price. I'd much rather get this item from my local farmer whose farm I've visited than Smithfield. That said, I'm still a cheapskate and buy shoulders on sale from the local grocer since their so much cheaper.

            1. re: Tom from Raleigh

              The fatback that both foodlion and HT had was prepackaged in a salt brine, not something I would want to use in a recipe. The mexican store I used in Raleigh had a full service butcher on site. All parts of the pig were there including heads.

              1. re: Tom from Raleigh

                I had a Piggly Wiggly near me that butchered its own hogs until a year or so ago- evidenced by the presence of heads and various other not-so-desiderata, but recently they seem to have gone the Smithfield route as well.

                Even so, I find that the lower end grocery stores have a much higher hit rate for anything that might be considered traditionally Southern. Consider them ethnic grocery stores for non-transplants.

            2. re: mpjmph

              Yeah. FL and Piggly Wiggly are what you want for this kind of thing.

              Harris Teeter doesn't even usually carry collards except around Thanksgiving/Xmas.

            3. I buy them throughout the year at The Pig in coastal SC, but I never had a problem finding them in Kentucky either.