Help for a newbie with a strange ingredient...

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stephy334

Assistant Cook
Joined
Sep 14, 2010
Messages
1
hi. this is my first post... i'm a 22 year old girl from england and need some advice on something that i really cant find any info for on the internet!
i dont know about in the USA... but in the uk at the moment its quite fashionable in restaurants for them to use the WHOLE of the animal. i have become completely facinated by this as i'm a poor student, the idea of making meals out of cheap meat appeals to me! i also love experimenting and trying different things.
anywayyyyyy my lovely butcher told me he could give me a pigs head... for free. a whole head!!!
i'm going to cut the cheeks off and slow cook them and serve with some mustard mash and veg, thats one meal done....
the ears is what i would like advice on. has anyone cooked them? i ideally want them crispy... but not sure how to go about this, seen a few things online but not totally inspired by them... any ideas?
also the tongue.... what should i do with that???
and as for the rest of the head, i'm just going to make a stew with the left over meat i think

if anyone has any experience with this i would love to hear it. not sure if its as popular in the USA but maybe someone can help! maybe thanks in advance and i look forward to chatting to everyone on the forum
steph
 

Chief Longwind Of The North

Certified/Certifiable
Joined
Aug 26, 2004
Messages
12,454
Location
USA,Michigan
Crispy ears would be a trick indeed as they are made of cartillage. The ears are best served as a sandwich ingredient. To cook, place them in a pressure cooker with just enough water to cover. Season with salt, pepper, garlic, onion, and maybe a little sage. Close and get the pot good and hot, following manufacturer's instructions. Cook for about 30 minutes at 15 lbs of pressure if you cooker will go that high. Remove from heat and let the pressurized steam escape until the pot no longer holds any pressure. Remove the ears and place between slices of your favorite bread with some cole slaw. Munch it down.

If you don't have a pressure cooker, then simply boil the ears over low heat for an hour to 90 minutes.

After the ears are cooked soft, you can slice them into bite sized pieces, deep fry them to get them to puff and become crispy, like pork rinds, sort of. Season with salt and a bit of malt vinegar.

And, save the broth. It can be used to make pork broth or stock for soups, stews, gravies, and such.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
 

MSC

Head Chef
Joined
Dec 2, 2005
Messages
2,459
Location
Studio City, Calif.
Well you've taken on a job, hope you're ready for it!
http://carolcookskeller.blogspot.com/2008/05/head-to-toe-part-two-pigs-head.html
That link should at least amuse you if it doesn't put you off pig's heads for life!
There are also many ways to cook both pig's ears and heads and if you use the following search terms, you'll get hundreds of hits and can choose.
recipe | recipes "pig's | pigs ears | head"
Good luck, hope you'll let us know how it came out.
 

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