(click to enlarge)
Stewed Pig Feet with Caramel
This is a very flavorful stew for the porkophile. Caution:
know that there is no civilized way to eat this (see
Comments). Serve with plenty of French Bread or
Jasmine Rice to sop up the delicious broth. French Bread? Cambodia was
part of French Indochina, so bread, though not used with Vietnamese
abandon, is not unknown in Cambodia.
Pig Feet (1)
Eggs, hard boiled
Lemon Grass (2)
Chilis, dry (3)
Tuk Trey (6)
-- Serve with
Prep: - (20 min - exclusive of boiling and peeling eggs)
Run: - (3-1/4 hrs)
- Hard boil EGGS by best method for
- Wash PIG FEET to remove bone chips and dry thoroughly.
- Peel just the hardest outside leaves from the LEMON GRASS.
Use the bottom 9 inches, cut crosswise into three pieces and lightly
bruised with your kitchen mallet.
- Cut SCALLIONS in half crosswise and bruise lightly.Slice
GINGER about 1/8 inch thick. Peel GARLIC and crush
- Mix all Aromatics items together.
- Make Caramel - see Note-4. In a small
saucepan place Sugar and Water. Over very moderate
heat, stir until sugar dries out into a crust, then let it melt until
the color of dark tea. Remove from heat. Carefully stir 1 cup of the
Stock into the sauce pan. The caramel will seize hard, but
set it back on the moderate heat and stir until it has dissolved.
- Into a suitable heavy bottomed pot, pour Caramel mix, the
remaining Sauce items, the Pig's Feet and the
Aromatics mix. Bring to a boil, then simmer covered until
until the meat is quite tender. about 2-1/2 hours.
- Take off heat and carefully skim off fat from the surface - or see
Note-7 for my method.
- Mix in the Boiled Eggs. Simmer another 10 minutes uncovered,
turning the eggs often for even color.
- Serve warm, with a good amount of the broth, and plenty French
Bread or Jasmine Rice to sop up that delicious broth.
- Pig Feet: These are now widely
available in ethnic markets here in Southern California (except Jewish
and Islamic of course). They are commonly already cut into pieces and
shrink wrapped in foam trays. They should be cut in half lengthwise,
then two cuts crosswise (three makes the pieces too small). If you find
them whole, have the butcher saw them for you. For details see our
Pig Feet page.
- Lemon Grass: These tough grass stems
are now widely available in North American markets that serve a
Southeast Asian community. I've even seen them in some Korean markets.
For details see our
Lemon Grass page.
- Red Chilis: Two dried red Thai chilis
will make this dish very moderately hot by Southern California
standards. See our Chili Page
- Caramel: The caramel would never be
made as part of the recipe in Cambodia or Vietnam - it's a kitchen
staple, made in larger batches (see our recipe
Caramel Sauce). If you have
it, just use 2 Tablespoons of it instead of making it here.
- Stock: This should be a light Pork
Stock, but if you don't have that, Chicken Stock or plain Water can
- Tuk Trey: This is an indispensable
Cambodian condiment and ingredient, nearly identical to Vietnamese
Nuoc Cham. It is easy to make by our recipe
- Method: The pattern recipe was finished
as above. The way I do it makes for a nicer looking finish. I strain
out the solids, then carefully remove the pig's feet (and a few of
the nicer solids to use as a sort of garnish). I discard the remaining
solids and defat the broth thoroughly using my gravy separator. Then
the Broth, Pig's Feet and Eggs go in. The pot is brought back to a
boil and simmered for 10 minutes as above. Actually, I've found the
eggs don't really color much in 10 minutes.
- Comments: There is no way to eat this
dish except with the fingers - those of one hand holding a chunk of
pig foot to bite off pieces, those of the other hand removing bones
from the mouth and tossing them in the bone bowl - and it's a bit
sticky. Supply piles of paper napkins, a bone bowl, and if possible,
finger bowls. There should be an easily available place to wash hands
and mouth. Clearly this is a "guy dish", but, in this day and age,
with girls now even allowed to eat
Kash in Armenia, they are welcome to indulge if they
- U.S. measure: t=teaspoon,
T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce,
#=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required
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