Tuesday, June 24, 2008

German Pork Knuckles

About a week ago while i was going through my daily dose of recipes, i came across this page: 李家咖哩小舖. It was a German pork knuckle recipe by a Taiwanese blogger so I had a few doubts on the authenticity of the dish. I went online and googled for a German one but none of the recipes I found looked convincing, so I went ahead and made the asianized German pork knuckle since it sounded so easy to make; just brine-->boil--> and bake! But like I said, i had some doubts on the recipe so instead of following the instructions, i decided to put in around 3 tablespoons of salt when it only called for less than half of that. MmmHmm, i chugged down at least one liter of water with my meal. Wahaha... Osmosis, powerful thing I tell you. I couldn't finish it so with my 廢物利用 skills, i shredded it up and it instantly became Ham! I threw it into my couscous salad (shall update later) the next day and that's how my pork knuckle-ham found a new home :) But even though i screwed up the knuckles, I must admit 李家咖哩小舖 had a good recipe... so don't let me bring you down and check out that website!

German Pork Knuckles
  • 1 pork knuckle (pork hocks, not the hooves)
  • 1/2 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon five-spice powder
  • thyme (optional)
  • ground black pepper
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup red wine (i used vodka)
  • 4 slices of ginger
  • 1-2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  1. Combine all the ingredients (except the knuckles) into a container and mix well.
  2. Place the washed pork knuckles in your container and marinate/brine for 7 days (refrigerate, flipping the knuckles once everyday). [picture 1]
    - if 1/2 cup of wine isn't enough, just add enough water to cover half of the knuckles.
  3. After 7 days, boil the knuckles (along with the marinade) in water and simmer for 45 minutes (remove the dirty foam as it boils). [picture 2, 3]
  4. Refrigerate the boiled knuckles for another day. [picture 4]
  5. Bake at gas mark 5 (190ºC, 375ºF) for one hour or until it's nice and crispy.

German Pork Knuckles
with mashed potatoes and sauerkraut


  1. Stumbled upon your blog via Open Source Food. Love your blog. Keep up the good work =)


  2. Anjelikuh,

    I was so delighted to find your German Pork Knuckle recipe. I ordered this dish,(I think) in France,it was so delioush I wanted to lick my plate. Long story short, I searched the web for days, then found your site. I can't find pork knuckle here that's not already cut into sections,(pork shank) which I think would make a difference in moistness? I think the spices you used were the same, I followed your directions exactly, other than the cut, I was disappointed, they didn't seem done enough and not moist at all like I had in France.Any suggestions? I'm boiling them today with black eyed peas.

    Thank you,
    Jan Danford
    Baker City,OR

  3. Hi Jan,
    This dish is also pretty new to me as i just made it once, so I'm not sure if my suggestions would be of help but i'll try =)

    I've tried another kind of pork knuckles in germany called Eisbein. It's boiled rather than baked and looks something like this:
    Maybe you could try this if your knuckles still turn out dry.

    Another thing is that curing the meat with salt may leave the meat dehydrated, maybe you could try brining it for 2-3 days instead of 7?

    If, not maybe you could cover your knuckles with tin foil when baking, that should help keep the moisture in.

    i'm still an amateur cook so hope this was of help. If not, please share your changes w/ me, i would love to know how your knuckles turned out! :D

  4. Thats a very interesting recipes. I have been inspired. Thanks.

  5. I am planning to cook this German Pork Knuckles for my beloved over weekend. I should start to prepare now ^^

  6. Hi,
    I recently fell for pork knuckles and was trying to learn how to make them at home instead... and thanks for your recipe!

    May I ask if the pork knuckle is raw when you brine it for 7 days. Wouldn't it turn bad in the fridge?

  7. @Cookie: Glad you like it! The pork knuckles were raw. It didn't go bad cuz i guess the salt prevents meat from going bad. There shouldn't be a problem!

  8. Thats a very interesting post. I have been inspired. Thanks. Free Web Directory

  9. Check out Steven Raichlen's "Planet Barbecue" cook book.. or he has recipes online. Anyway, I have eaten pork knuckle in Munich and his recipe appears to be VERY close! Have NOT tried it yet.. BUT for sure will...

  10. I love Pork Knuckles, had them for the first time in the Czech Republic, and whenever I see them on the menu somewhere, there usually excellent. Great with freshly shredded horse rashish too!!