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Old 01-27-2008, 07:39 AM   #1
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Pork Shanks

Braised Pork Foreshanks! Maybe I need to get out more since this is the first time I've seen them on a menu. I do a pretty mean Lambshank using Tom Valentis recipe and I'm sure I could figure out how to cook a Porkshank just as soon as I find out how to buy them. These weren't the smoked shriveled hamhocks that make a pot of beans into a religious experience they were fresh, they were braised, they were barely clinging to the bone and obscenely tender! They were served with Spaetzle and Ratatouille. The presentation was delightful with the trotter end sticking up and the ham end down. Is this haute cuisine? Is it nouveau? Is it common as dirt and I'm an ignorant hick?
I was pretty impressed with them, anybody else have any experience with these?
............ ^Happy Che'Mark

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Old 01-27-2008, 08:49 AM   #2
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No che'mark, fresh pork should be common but with the exception of pork loin we generally have to go to the butcher to get it. Why? Have no idea.

Have never had fresh pork shanks and have never seen them in the store. Gotta talk to the butcher about that.

But if you liked that, ask him to order a fresh ham. They are delectable. Why they are not commonly available I have no idea. But we gotta get one soon.

One word of caution. We ordered one from the butcher a few years ago. And he proudly came through. We expected a 4-5 lb thing, but we were presented with a 17 lb whole right end of a pig. And there are only two of us.

We could not let the proud butcher down, so we took it with great praise for him.

But how in the heck.....

We went to the hardware and purchased a hacksaw for the kitchen to make it into two hams.

The Easter ham was fantastic as were the sandwiches, the fresh ham meat loaves, and everything else we could figure out how to do with fresh ham (and we gave a bunch of food away).

As for the pork shanks, would probably cook them as I do lamb shanks. But might be tempted to do them with an Italian or Mediterranean flair, whatever those flairs are.

But to us the piggy, the raw non cured piggy, is fantastic. And am not a fan of the loin but like to eat a little lower on the hog. But admit it is tough to find that stuff.

Gotta talk to the butcher. Thanks for posting.
Before criticizing a person, walk a mile in his shoes - then you are a mile away and you have his shoes!
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Old 01-27-2008, 09:43 AM   #3
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On another forum I found that "long feet" are available by the case, these are the trotters(feet) still attached to the foreshank. I'm always saying I'm gonna do a fresh ham but usually wind up with a Boston Butt (shoulder) instead. Tenderloin's ok but I like more fat in the meat for slower cooking times. I ordered a Pork Belly yesterday after seeing it here and reading about it, tender roast pork with cracklin's on top YUM
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