Two-day Workshops In the USA: The French Pig: Making Farmstead Charcuterie

February 24, 2013


Dominique Chapolard and I are excited to announce a series of two-day workshops in the USA in late April 2013. With two days to explore the French charcuterie pig- we can devote time to both hands-on seam butchery and making charcuterie a la . How does the Chapoalrds run their 100-acre farm and support 5 families with just 30 sows? Dominique calls it the Short Circuit- I call it Full Circle farming. However you call it, the trick is in working not just nose-to-tail but seed-to-sausage. Come learn how and why the Chapolard Family chose to butcher and transform into added value charcuterie all their pigs- 8 to 10 every week- selling them retail at local markets. Workshops are limited in size by venue to no more than 20 participants.

_MG_2851-1 coppa-1 2012-11-15 12.37.16

Dates & Locations: all events are open to the public.


Chapolard Farmstead Charcuterie:  ventreche, saucisse seche, chorizo, saucisson, filet sec, boudin, noix de jambon , coppa, paté de campagne, fricandeaux, paté de tête, boudin blanc, rillettes, 


Masterclasses & Workshops-  The French Pig: a workshop about farmstead charcuterie*

April 16-28 2013 USA


The Butcher, The Cook & The Gascon Roadshow 

When American charcuterie teacher Kate Hill and French framer/butcher Dominique Chapolard come from Southwest France, they pack their bags full of the traditional techniques of butchering and making French Farmhouse charcuterie as practiced on The Chapolard Family farm in Gascony.

What is Farmstead Charcuterie? Borrowing the definition from ‘farmhouse’ or ‘farmstead’ cheeses, ‘farmstead charcuterie’ is made with meat from animals raised on a single farm. On the Ferme Baradieu in Gascony, not only does the Chapolard family butcher 8-10 of their 12-month-old pigs each week and transform the 400 lb. carcasses into French Farmstead Charcuterie, but they grow all the cereal and feed on their 30 sow, 100 acre farm—a true seed-to-sausage operation.

This is a hands-on workshop as Dominique and Kate will help you discover the French way to butcher and breakdown a pig for charcuterie and create a butcher’s dozen of traditional French Farmstead charcuterieincluding: noix de jambon, jambonneaux, ventrèche roulée, fricandeaux, paté de campagne, paté en croute, paté de tête, saucisse de Toulouse, saucisson, saucisse seche, paupiettes, rillettes, and grattons.

This intensive, two-day master class includes 15 hours of demonstration tutoring and hands on experience. French-style seam butchery for charcuterie and making the above products are underscored by a comprehensive Seed-to-Sausage farming presentation based on the Chapolard’s modern approach to working their traditional family farm in Southwest France.

Workshop fees include: a generous share of fresh pork and charcuterie products produced over the weekend, lunches, written materials and a few fun French products.

For further information about each workshop, please contact Kate Hill or the local contact listed above.


Workshop Fees include: 15 hours instruction- both demonstration and hands on; all meat and workshop materials costs; class written materials; lunches & beverages. Optional supper or other casual gatherings to be announced.

2013 Two-day Workshop Fees: $ 875 per person payable by Paypal via Eventbrite. Workshops limited to 20 participants maximum.

salle de coupe gang of 4

*Like Farmstead Cheese, when artisan charcuterie is made from pork produced from pigs on a single farm, we call it Farmstead Charcuterie.

Workshop Schedule 

Day One: 8 hours 

The French Pig from Seed-to-Sausage- Meet Dominique Chapolard the Butcher & Kate Hill the Cook.

Morning- Growing Charcuterie from the ground up- Discussion &  French Seam Butchery Demonstration.

9:00-10:00 Understanding Nose-to-Tail-to-Table thinking in farming. The Chapolards rear 500 pigs a year on their family farm growing all their own feed, butchering, transforming and selling 100% of their production and supporting 5 families.

A short discussion will set the foundation and talking points:

-working with the big pigs- 12 months+ 400

-feed to meat ratio

-taking the time

-texture, structure and taste

-curing mature meat

-balance fresh cuts and charcuterie

-direct sale profits us all- the French market system

10-12:00- A Perfect Breakdown from Whole Carcass to Sub-Primals- French style. (demo)

  • French seam butchery, muscle over bone breakdown
  • French cut chart and glossary
  • working the tip- the elegant knife
  • new cuts and ways of looking at the traditional whole muscles

lunch- 12-1:45 Round Table Discussion of Farmer to Butcher to Cook Business

Afternoon- An introduction to charcuterie by cook/author/ teacher Kate Hill

2:00- 5:00  Hands-On Butchery and Preliminary Salting

  • Whole carcass breakdown lessons for Charcuterie Cuts- emphasis on whole muscle curing- sheeting out the ribs.
  • Breaking Sub-Primals into Charcuterie Cuts- hands-on-knives
  • Charcuterie Basics: how curing extends your meat locker by pickling, smoking, curing & drying, sausage
  • All About Salting- how much, how long and why
  • Preparing noix de jambon, ventrèche, & jambonneau
  • Trimming and Grinding meat for fricandaux, paté and paupiettes.
  • _MG_3944-2

Day Two 9 hours: French Farmstead Charcuterie: cooked, cured and confited. 

Morning- Tete-to-Tail Farmstead Charcuterie- using the whole hog in the traditional French way.

9:00-10:00 Discussion “How to make whole hog butchery pay? Seed to sausage retail ideas.

  • Added value products to make
  • Team planning for whole carcass utilization

10:00-12:30 Understanding the Four Steps of Charcuterie: cooked, salted, cured, & dried.

Hands-on making the following products:

  • Head: paté de tête, brawn or head cheese

Liver: fricandeaux, paté en croute, meat pies, and terrines,

Fat: fritons and confit de porc or preserving in fat.

lunch- farm lunch with discussion- ‘tout seul, tu meurt’ or how the G.A.E.C. system works.

afternoon- Hands-on transformation. Continue cooking and preparing charcuterie:

2-6 pm

Whole muscle curing-

  • Ventrèche roulée or French bacon
  • noix de jambon
  • Charnu or coppa
  • Seasoning, tying, netting and smoking
  • Drying and ageing at ambient temperature

The Fifth Quarters of the Beast- cooking with offal and the all the trim

  • Paté de tete
  • Rillettes
  • Pied de porc


jenn & ham (1 of 1)

Come run with the XL pigs…

(all the really good photography is by Tim Clinch, a few others are by me- all rights reserved for our next ebook project)



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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Denise February 26, 2013 at 5:31 am

WHAT wonderful news, except for the fact that is amazingly delicious (and informative) tour is not hitting the west coast. We are weeping …..

Anthony Cho March 1, 2013 at 11:38 am

I am interested in charcuterie and salumi making. I’ve tried to find intensive course and it seems like right one I can apply.
Please let me know the detailed procedure to make a reservation.
Thanks & best regards,

Paul M Sasso March 5, 2013 at 10:37 pm

Can’t believe you are going to be in Kentucky (a lovely state I must say) and won’t be able to see you as i have so many irons in the fire right now (one is constructing a proper building to cure things in) I have sent the link to many people who need to have your smiling face in thier lives

Peter March 6, 2013 at 4:53 pm

It’s hard to believe that it’s been a year already. Please give my best to Dom, Christiane, and the others, and I hope to see you when you’re in the US. Come for dinner!

Marc Dunham April 18, 2013 at 9:06 pm

Kate and Dominique,

We had such a wonderful and exciting time! We learned so much and are happy to know we’ve made new friends. There is an open door at Francis Tuttle School of Culinary Arts anytime!



Eric May 6, 2013 at 4:13 am

I can’t attend but would readily buy some DVD’s if the instruction is very precise.

Joseph Faney August 17, 2014 at 6:54 pm

any courses for the end of 2014 or 2015?

Kate Hill August 28, 2014 at 3:32 pm

News and Dates coming soon- October 20-29 in MI, OK, WA and OR.

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