[cooking] Brined pork hock with infused Iron Buddha

This is one of the most traditional Chinese home cooking dish that not many families would make, because it takes a lot of time and effort.

In order to ensure the pork hock stays in one piece after brining for a few hours and keeping the collagen and skin good looking and tasty, we need to first torch it. Yes, using a creek brûlée torch to burn the surface.

This will remove the pig fur from the skin and holding the skin tight together from hours of braising.

I’m always an old school cooking geek, and I’ve always enjoyed slow cooking in my Le Creuset cast iron pot.

Braising this pork hock will take about 3 to 4 hours using Le Creuset for this juicy, tender texture.

What you need:

– Pork Hock (in standard size)
– Chicken stock 1-2 cartons (to cover the pork hock completely)
– 1 store bought Lo Shui pack
– 8 tbsp dark soy sauce
– 3 tbsp rice wine
– 1 piece/stick Chinese cane sugar (pin tong)
– 5 pieces of ginger
– 3 cloves of garlic
– 2 small packs of Iron Buddha tea leaves
– 1 tsp black tea leaves

What to do:

1. Use the creme brulee torch to burn and seal the surface of the pork hock
2. Slightly sweat the ginger and garlic in the cast iron pot in medium heat (no oil needed!) then add the pork hock
3. Add chicken stock, Lo Shui pack, dark soy sauce, rice wine; once it boils turn it down to low to medium heat and braise for about 3 hours (check how tender the meat gets, braise for a little longer if needed)
4. Combine Iron Buddha and black tea leaves into one tea bag.  Turn off the heat and add tea bag in to soak for at least one hour.
5. Remove tea bag and reheat until it’s boiled and serve.