Monday, July 25, 2011

Pig’s Trotters in Ginger and Sweetened Vinegar 豬腳薑醋


Pig Trotters in Ginger and Sweetened Vinegar01

This traditional Chinese dish conveys a mystical message even in Chinese community, as it’s often cooked for women post-labour. In fact, it’s a dish that everyone, including men, can enjoy, and needless to have a fear of embarrassment. Many Chinese yumcha restaurants offer this dish with a very pricey tag. The pig’s trotters (aka pork knuckles) are so moist, tender and succulent after the slow cooking in the tasty sweetened black vinegar. The natural collagen of pig’s trotters is very good for our health too. Both of my daughter and hubby especially like the hard boiled eggs that soaked in the tasty sauce. They can finish one after another. What I have to do is to make sure they don’t over eat.

Every family has its own version of this dish. The recipe I posted here is adapted from my mother-in-law’s cooking. She used to cook this dish for her daughter and every daughter-in-laws in her family, including me of course. Lucky me, I could learn from her in person during my travel back to Hong Kong. Hope you’d enjoy this dish as much as I do. A side note, my MIL only uses the Pat Chun Sweetened Vinegar(百珍甜醋), because she loves its taste the most and doesn’t need to blend it any other kind of vinegar.

Trotters in Ginger and Sweetened Vinegar (Printable recipe)
By Christine's Recipes
Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 120mins

Ingredients:
  • 730 gm pork trotter (pork hocks/pork knuckles)
  • 200 gm ginger, old or young
  • 2 bottles (600ml each) sweetened black vinegar (I used Pat Chun sweetened vinegar)
  • 6 eggs

Peel Ginger

Sweetened Rice Vinegar

Method:
  • Peel the ginger. Cut into smaller pieces if it’s too large. Lightly bruise the ginger with the broad side of a cleaver or chef’s knife. Cook over low heat on a wok or fry pan without any oil. (This cooking method is called “white wok” (白鑊) in Chinese, that means frying without any oil.) By doing so, help the ginger dries up the water inside as much as possible. Make sure not to burn the ginger though. When the ginger looks dry, add a bit of oil, fry the ginger until aromatic. Set aside.
  • Use a large clay pot or a casserole (Don’t use cast iron or metal ones though, not suitable for cooking vinegar.) Pour in the vinegar. Cook over medium heat and bring it to boil. Add the ginger. When it boils again, reduce heat to low and simmer for another 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool completely. Cover and store at a cool and shady place, the vinegar and ginger will keep longer. Or place in a fridge, let the ginger absorb the flavour. You need to cook the ginger vinegar and bring it to a boil once a week, then let cool. If the vinegar is not polluted, it could last for 4 to 5 weeks, long enough to sustain for consuming during confinement period.
  • Rinse and clean the pork trotters/hocks, remove any hairs if any. Blanch in boiling water for about 20 minutes to remove any impurities and blood. Drain well. Set aside.
  • Remove ginger vinegar from fridge. Place at room temperature for a while. Then cook and bring it to a boil. Add the pig’s trotters. When it boils, reduce heat and simmer for about 1 hour, or until the pork becomes tender.
  • While cooking the pork, prepare hard boiled eggs: Place eggs and water in a saucepan, the water should cover the eggs. Turn on the heat, cook the eggs on medium heat and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 6 minutes. Drain out the eggs with a slotted spoon and immediately transfer to a bowl of very cold water. Leave to cool completely. Shell the eggs.
  • Transfer the eggs to the ginger vinegar. When it boils again. Turn off the heat. Let the eggs soak in the vinegar until turned brown on surface. Done. Serve hot.
Pig Trotters in Ginger and Sweetened Vinegar02

Notes:
  • The amount of ginger used here was quite small compared to an ordinary confinement one as I just cooked this to ease our craving. You could adjust the amount of ginger and pork to your preference. It’s very flexible.
  • Make sure the vinegar cover all the ingredients, so get a clay pot or casserole in the right size.
  • The traditional way of making this confinement dish for women is to use old ginger. That said, old ginger is good for helping women to expel wind from abdomen and get speedy recovery from giving birth. However, the woody, fiberous texture of old ginger is quite tough, not an enjoyment to eat for some people. Thus, if you don’t cook it as a confinement dish, just like me, use young ginger. You’ll enjoy the less hot taste and tender texture of young ginger more.
Other yummy pig trotter recipes:

43 comments :

  1. In fact my hubby enjoyed this 猪脚醋 more than me. Better don't let him sees this... hahaa..

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  2. thanks for the shout-out Christine! Love this dish hehe

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  3. Drooling....drooling....my favourite dish! Yes, I will also eat the eggs one after another. Will tell myself it's ok once in a while...hehe. It's a long time I have not eaten this dish. I need to look for the pig's trotters first. Thanks very much for sharing.

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  4. Thanks again for this recipe. One of our girlfriends just had a baby girl. Among our friends were talking / craving about 豬腳薑醋 last weekend, but none of us knows how to make it. Now, no more excise, now we can get start it.

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  5. I definitely would love to try this! And I love the additional of the hard boiled eggS!!

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  6. wow! I am staring at your beautiful dish, especially those hard boiled eggs! so yummy!

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  7. Would love to try this specialty, great flavors with ginger and sweet vinegar!

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  8. Haha, this dish is typically associated to confinement dish but I guess anyone who loves pig trotters in ginger and sweetened vinegar can enjoy this dish alike....:)

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  9. Christine, this is my favorite one ...reminds me that it is time to make some too...you have just stirred up my craving..am drooling all over the keyboard now :p
    Have a nice day,
    Elin

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  10. oh YUM!! I love this dish. Mister makes it quite often. So good in winter.

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  11. love this dish will try to cook this one of these days.

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  12. love this dish. will try to cook this one of these days. thanks for the recipe.

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  13. Kinda miss 豬腳薑醋...loaded with calcium and flavours.

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  14. I've never eaten pigs trotter in vinegar that comes with eggs, but I've seen it on TV all the while. Maybe next time I should try.
    Thanks for the link up:)

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  15. ahh. this brings back memories. My mum makes something very similar. This looks very nourishing and comforting. thank you for sharing the recipe.

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  16. I'm craving for this food. It also looks like a Filipino recipe.

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  17. Yes, it is my husband's favour! He just had an operation and he is craving for this dish. Thank you very much!!

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  18. Love this - had it when I was married to my chinese husband and had our first (of 3) babies. My mother-in-law used to ask me to have more children tempting me with the promise of making this dish!!!!

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  19. @Karen Lau:
    Really? Did you accept your mother-in-law's deal?

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    Replies
    1. After the two girls I let her think I would only have a 3rd baby if she would make it for me. We had a boy the 3rd time so no more after that! She used to use pork butt for me cos I was squeamish over the trotters!. Youngest son's wife is due their second baby and I have promised to make this for them this time round! Thank you again for sharing this recipe. My own scottish mother loves this and remembers the wonderful smell when it was on the cooker.

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  20. some say that if you've had a C-section, you can't have this? any reason?

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  21. @Anonymous:
    That said ginger is not suitable for consuming for the 1st week after labour as it delays the healing of wounds. If breast feeding, take note that ginger more or less can lead to baby's jaundice through breastmilk.

    As for c-section, the wounds are bigger and longer, so the healing time would be longer. That said, it's better to avoid some foods that will stimulate vigorous growth or irritate the muscles around the wounds.

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  22. Hi Christine,
    I am a Hongknoger. May I know where do you buy the Pak Chun Sweetened Vinegar?

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    Replies
    1. Where do you live right now?
      I got it from Asian grocers.

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  23. I had never got interested eating things like this because it looked grotesque; however, my chinese friend told me that this contained good source for joint and skin. It is impossible to cook this but i try to eat this in Chinese restaurant. it was not smell bad and very soft.

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  24. Can i use an enameled cast iron dutch oven to make it?

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    Replies
    1. Better to be cautious.
      As you need to cook and soak the ginger with a large amount of vinegar, I'd recommend to use glass or stainless steel for the sake of health.

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  25. Hi Christine, I had share part of this recipe in my food blog, I added link to your post too. hope you dont mind :)

    http://littlelambcollection.blogspot.sg/2013/12/pork-knuckles-in-sweet-vinegar.html

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    Replies
    1. Hi Samantha,
      So glad you tried my recipe and thanks for your link love.

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  26. Hi Christine, followed the recipe, but the pork hocks turned out very hard...any ideas what could've gone wrong?

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    Replies
    1. As every kitchen utensil is very different, so the cooking time will vary too.
      If the pork hocks are not soft enough, simply cook longer until you're satisfied.

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  27. Hi,
    Where can I buy the sweetened vinegar in Singapore?

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    1. No idea, sorry. I'm not living in Singapore. Might try Asian grocers.

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  28. Hi Christine I like your recipe very much but I do not understand in English , I can't find any Google translate in your blog.

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    Replies
    1. Got Chinese version here on my Chinese food blog.

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  29. Hi Christine, in HK people use salted eegs, Pls try .

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    Replies
    1. Yes, I heard that before. Could try next time.

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  30. Hi Christine, in HK people use salted eegs tease very nice, Please try it.

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  31. any idea where can I get his [Pat Chun Sweetened Vinegar(百珍甜醋)] in Malaysia?

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    Replies
    1. No idea, sorry. I'm not living in Malaysia.

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  32. Hi Christine, you use the whole bottle of vinegar and no need add any water?

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    Replies
    1. No, no need to add any water. The pork trotter will release some water though.

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