October 15, 2007
A fine Mahock to you all.
Apparently today is "blog action day".
It is only a coincidence that I post. After all, why expect "Action" on a Monday?
Pork Hocks. I have a strange fascination. Fleshy, soooo Fleshy, with skin that looks like an albino cowboy (Leathery but white). And so many bones! All that gooey marrow and gelatin just waiting to be stewed, and ward off future arthritis (or so I've read).
Apparently, bone broth contains more-absorbable calcium. However, this is a "fact" posted by Broth Endorsers, and may or may not have scientific merit. In spite, from a food perspective, broth should be embraced, and MSG shunned.
I wanted broth. Just to drink, like a beverage. My own personal Bovril. It is sometimes more satisfying than soup, and more nourishing than tea (no, I am not an old lady, merely practicing). My single hock was slow cooked overnight with celery, onions, carrots, S&P, garlic and loads of fresh savory spice (thyme, rosemary, sage). I got a great broth, which was my goal. Mission accomplished (very little fat by the way).
I am now left with this big chunk of boiled meat with skin on. I am not a fan of boiled meat. It is stringy, sad, and, well, boiled. However, I hate Wasting Food more than I hate Boiled Meat. It disgusts me to read recipes for pork hock that tell you to throw all the skin pieces away and just keep some meat bits. This cannot be right, I have eaten several Chinese hock dishes that have had savory skin or nicely-seasoned chewy bits.
And so begins the experiment.
I made a sauce of goo. The classic miscellaneous improvised BBQ sauce that manages to incorporate every sugary-based condiment you have in the house at the time. Honey garlic sauce, oyster sauce, sherry, molasses, brown sugar, garlic, balsamic, tomato juice, ginger, other stuff that appeared... I marinated my bone-free meat chunks in said goo and then cooked in the oven for ~50 minutes at 350. It got dark, gooey, chewy, and tastes like awesome BBQ. I don't know if I can duplicate it, but it was fun. I have made two meals out of one. Thus, A Fine Mahock to you all.