Monday, September 19, 2016

Pork Cheeks Braised With Ginger

Pork cheeks, yes you heard it right, it's also known as pork jowls, they are the flaps, thin, cut of pork meat, locating right the lower part of the side of the face of the pigs. If you never use this cut of meat before, you should give it a try, they are very tender and yet delicious. At the Asian supermarket where I shop, they sell pork cheeks for $5.99 / pound.
With this super tenderized cut of meat, you can do a lot with it. The ones I got some time in July, I braised them with ginger to have them with steamed brown rice. Since it was my first time using the pork cheeks I purposely bought only a few pieces. Therefore, instead of writing a recipe for it, I would just simply jot down all the steps on how I executed this dish. Feel free to ask me any questions that you might have. 
-Clean the pork cheeks thoroughly, cut them into strips approximately 2/3 inch thick. 
-Place the meat in the clean container, marinate with some minced garlic, julienne gingerwith the ginger, peeled, washed thoroughly, slice them thinly lengthwise, stack them all up and julienne them into thin strips.
-With it, you would add the following ingredients for seasoning: dark soy sauce, for color, fish sauce, sea salt, black pepper. Hold off the sugar at this stage. Mix well, let's them well marinate for at least one hour in the fridge.
-In a small, clean and dried pot, place on the stove, turn on the heat to high. Drizzle in some cooking oil when the pot is hot, pour in the marinating meats, stir well with a pair of chopsticks. Let's them cook for a good 15 minutes, noticing the meat would shrink a bit, ladle over with some good chicken broth if you have some. If not, water is fine, too. 
-Bring it to a boil, add some dark brown sugar, I personally prefer to use the Japanese black sugar, they come in junks, they would definitely enhance the flavor of the dish and yet it will add a nice touch to the dish in term of the color, and the best of all they are low in calories. 
-Simmer the pork for about 15 minutes, taste and adjust to your liking, turn off the heat when it's done, serves them with steamed rice is preferable. 

The thin flaps of meat, top in the picture are the pork cheeks.
I didn't get to use them right away after purchasing, so I did this. Place in a SaveFood bag, air vacuum and freeze it.
cooking time
Japanese black sugar
the big dark brown junk in this pot is the Japanese black sugar
chicken broth
Bon Appetit

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