Okay, I spent many a day in a dimly lit Czech pub, hungover and eating a smoked pork hock. Those days are behind me, but I didn’t want the pork hocks to be, so when at my local butcher I decided I’d give it a go!
What in the heck is a smoked pork hock?
Ham hocks, pork hocks, or pork knuckles are all one in the same. This is a tough piece of meat, full of connective tissue, ligaments, and muscle, it needs to be cooked low and slow, to turn it into delicious fork-tender meat.
Most people prefer an unsmoked hock, but if all you can find is a smoked hock it will do. (That’s what I did.) You usually cook the hock one of two ways, completely in the oven, or boiled and then roasted in the oven.
Who the heck eats a smoked pork hock?
Pork hocks are a popular cuisine coming out of Germany (Bavaria). It is usually served with braised cabbage and it a staple in their diet. Many surrounding countries have a version of this dish. I remember many small town celebrations in Czechia adapting this pig delicacy, by roasting or smoking a whole pig!
Ok so how do you boil & roast this hock?
Super easy! Literally boil the pork hock until it is falling off the bone (2-3 hours) and then pop that sucker in the oven covered in a little oil at 400F for 20 minutes or until the skin crunchy! If it is smoked you don’t need any seasoning (it’s going to taste like ham!) Serve with cabbage and some good mustard for a real authentic meal!