Pork hocks are extremely delicious as they hold a strong flavor within it. If it is boiled or braised with its skin and bones on, the tasty salty tasting flavor of the meat can seep out into whatever green ingredients you are cooking it with. In fact, they can go with most vegetables and beans as the flavor from the pork hocks complements the slightly bitter taste of the vegetables and beans. If you are wondering how to cook pork hocks, here is a simple way to do it.
First of all, prepare all the vegetables you would like to serve with the pork hock. You can use any green vegetable, like celery, leek, and cabbage, or other vegetables like navy beans, carrot, and onions. Most vegetable you use will go well with pork hocks, so it is really up to you. Whichever they are, dice them up into squares, and make sure they are the same size so that they will be cooked evenly.
In the meantime, fill up a large pot with water, and add the pork hocks, black peppercorns, some salt, and vegetables into the pot. Cook it for about two to three hours over medium heat, but make sure the pork hocks are not overcooked or they will become extremely tough. After that, you can take out all the pork hocks from the boiling water, and drain out the excess water. However, do keep the gravy where the vegetables were cooked in as well as the vegetables. Then, have your oven preheated to 425?F. Using a cast iron pan greased with vegetable shortening, place the vegetables and the pork hocks on it, as well as some of the gravy made earlier onto the pan. Then, leave them to bake for half an hour. During the wait, always check to see that the gravy does dry out. Whenever it looks like it is drying out, pour more of the liquid in. You can also add some beer, or plain water mixed with salt to the gravy, depending on which you would prefer.
Once the half hour is up, check to see if the meat is thoroughly cooked. If it is cooked, then you may serve it with the vegetables and gravy on a platter. You might also want to serve it with potatoes, sauerkraut, bread, dumplings, rice, or anything at all you think might complement the dish. You may also want to strain some of the earlier cooked gravy from the pot and pour it onto a sauce plate to use as a dip. Serve them while they are still hot. This recipe one of the simpler versions on how to cook pork hocks.