Pork Shank - what is it? It's the leg of the pork, so we get 4 on every pig. Osso Bucco is the same cut, but it has been sliced into "chops". Most people know them smoked as Bacon Hocks - we usually only smoke them during the winter months, but if you would like them at other times, please ask and I'll get the butcher to smoke some.
I will link to some recipes - on this blog and on my other blog and I'll post a few yummy photos. The main thing to remember is that you do need to kind of slow cook them for a bit, but at the end, whack the heat up and try and crisp up the rind - you are after a crispy rind (sometimes it can be a little chewy). This makes a nice contrast, with the soft meat and crunchy rind. The recipes below can be used for either shanks or osso bucco - if cooking shanks, I usually cut the meat off to serve them - one shank should almost feed two people so you don't quite need 1 each. If cooking shanks, cook them on their side covered for a start, turning over after an hour, then towards the end when you increase the heat, stand them up - you have to lean them against each other, so that most of the find is facing up so that it will crisp better. If you still don't have crackling, you could try peeling off the rind and placing back in the oven for a bit.
Pork Shanks Braised in Master Stock (scroll down a bit on this link).
Sticky Pork Osso Bucco or Shanks (either work) (and sorry, I don't seem to have a photo! but they are delicious and a lot less effort than the above master stock ones.
In a 500ml jug, place the following:
100ml soy sauce/tamari
1 tablespoon each of:
apple cider vinegar
1 star anise, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 tsp szechuan peppercorns, 2 whole cloves, 1 tsp each of cumin seeds, fennel seeds and coriander seeds.
and then top up to 500ml with water or bone broth
Pour over the shanks/osso bucco and bake in a moderately low oven for 1.5 hours then whack the heat up high and bake for another 1/2 hour. You may need to thicken the pan juices with a little arrowroot or cornflour.
Osso Bucco with tomatoes Photo below (Baked Pork Osso Bucco recipe on this link and you can substitute other vegetables if you like. The link also has another one with olives.
Place the veggies on the base of the pan.
Drizzle with oil and dot with Butter (Osso bucco has very little fat)
Honey Sesame Osso Bucco
1kg pork osso bucco
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
In a mortar and pestle, crush:
3 cloves garlic
1 inch piece of ginger
Then add half the toasted seeds and crush together. Add:
1/4 cup soy sauce/tamari
1 tablespoon each: fish sauce and sesame oil
2 tablespoons honey
1 cup rice wine.
Pour over the osso bucco and bake for 2 hours - turning the heat up for the last 1/2 hour.
You can also roast the shanks as a mini roast - simply rub the shank with some salt, preferably seasoned salt and sprinkle with some oil and place in the oven to roast for about two hours.
We will have both Pork Shanks and Pork Osso Bucco on special at the markets this weekend - $10/kg so please give it a go, I'm sure you won't be disappointed!