Pork Hocks Braised with Potatoes and Apple ~ Christine Ano-Larson

This recipe and photo of our Crooked Gap Farm pork hocks (shanks) was shared by Christine Ano-Larson.

Christine says, “I must say, it was the PERFECT fall dish. Here’s the recipe I sort of followed in case you want to give it a go. It’s AWESOME!”

This recipe, by Jonathan M. Forester, along with additional photos, can be found at Slash Food: http://www.slashfood.com/2007/08/13/spicy-braised-pork-shank/

Forester’s Spicy Braised Pork Shank
1 pork shank
1 Vidalia Onion- rough shopped
1 gala apple- rough shopped
8 cloves of garlic- finely chopped
2 large shallots- finely chopped
1 cup rough chopped celery
eight small red potatoes, quartered.
1 large tomato or 2 small ones- rough chopped
1-2 jalapeno- seeds and veins discarded and finely chopped (use one if you only like a little bit of spice or two if you want a bit more. This isn’t a very spicy dish and just has a hint of heat to boost the other flavors.)
4 oz. red wine
6 oz. white wine (Dry, sweet, it doesn’t matter. I used a few ounces of a dry Chardonnay and a few of a sweet Late Harvest Riesling.)
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons of soy sauce
1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce

Pre-heat your oven to 300 degrees. Cross hatch the skin on the shank, cutting all the way through the skin and fat, but not into the meat. Melt the butter in your dutch oven and saute the shank at medium-high heat until the skin is crispy and puffed up and a deep golden brown. This caramelizing of the meat, skin, and fat, what is called the Maillard Reaction, will produce a deep and meaty flavor that really makes the dish.

Pour off all the accumulated fat and butter and then lower the heat to medium-low and add the garlic and shallots and saute for a minute or so.

Then add the celery.

The onions and apple.

The tomatoes and all the rest of the ingredients. Turn up the heat to high and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat, cover it, and put it in the 300 degree oven for two hours. Gently stir the ingredients and turn over the pork shank once every thirty minutes, but otherwise leave it alone. After two hours add the potatoes, submerging them in the sauce/cooked vegetables and cook for an additional thirty minutes without touching it.

Plate it on a big serving platter and then pull the meat from the bones and serve. Mmmmm… that looks great.

And tastes even better. This is a very rich dish and it actually made enough for three meals which I had over several days. The flavor developed even more after sitting in the fridge and on the third day I was moaning with pleasure as I finished it off. It was so good that I made it again, this time with smoked pork shanks which gave it almost a completely different flavor. Either way it’s a great dish.


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