Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Ultimate Comfort Food

Honestly, I don't know what comes close to a slow roasted pot of pork hocks and feet for its sheer yumminess.  By slow roasting, you end up with incredibly tender, moist meat.  The gelatin released from this yummy dish, is incredibly beneficial for bones and joint health.  My farmer friends assured me that this dish was to die-for.  I'll admit that when I first cooked pig's feet, I was a little apprehensive.  Um, they're feet.  But, one bite and any apprehension was gone.  And, yes indeed, my kid's love this dish, too.

It couldn't be easier to make either. Just slow roast hocks and/or feet with some butter or some bacon fat that you have on reserve, some salt, and a couple of glugs of wine or homemade red wine vinegar.  Let it roast in a 250 degree oven for approximately 10 hours. We like to eat ours with cauliflower rice because it does a great job of soaking up all of the wonderful drippings.

It shouldn't be too difficult to find pork hocks and feet. While I wouldn't use commercial sources, local farmers may have some for sale. We always make sure we ask the butcher to include all these juicy bits when we are giving our cutting instructions.


  1. Hi Tara,

    Just wondering where you get your pork from? Is it pastured and soy-free?


  2. Hi Christine,

    We have bought pork from various producers around Canada. Since being in Ontario, we have purchased from both Terra at Green Being and Gerald at Twin Creeks. Both were heritage pigs (mixed Tamworth/Berkshire) and we were very happy with the final product. Gerald, in particular, is using a very good butcher who dry cured the hams. They were wonderful.

    We have another pig coming in a couple of weeks courtesy of a friend around Kingston.

    All of our farmers employ pasturing, soy-free, and gmo-free practices.


  3. Thanks Tara! Just wanted to let you know that Green Being Farms does use soy in their feed.

  4. Just found your blog today and am enjoying it. I'm hoping you can answer a question for me. I know that feeding beef pretty much any quantity of grain eliminates most of the CLA and throws off the Omega 3/Omega 6 balance. What about pigs? We have several farmers who pasture their pigs, but also feed them grain and/or pig nuts. Do they retain their CLA and their Omega 3/Omega 6 balance? I guess what I'm asking is whether there is a nutritional advantage to eating pastured pork if the animals get a significant amount of their food from grain or pig nuts. (Other than the fact that the pork I get from my favorite farmer tastes fantastic!)


  5. I think that's a great question. You're right about pork and how they are commonly fed grain. However, there are farmers that are raising pigs without the grain using seeds, nuts, traditional farmhouse scraps, whey from raw milk processing, allowing the pigs to forage for roots and other goodies etc.

    You're not likely to find a farmer that has grain-free pork easily. It has a lot to do with genetics and the breed the farmer is raising. My advice would be to seek out a farmer raising the older breeds that are hard to come by now (like 'large black'). These traditional breeds were meant to be more economical for the farmer. So, they may grow slower than steroid pig, but they didn't require the farmer to truck in large amounts of grain (being so cost prohibitive).

    We have access to both pastured, organic pigs that have been supplemented with some grain and a grain-free version. I much prefer the grain-free version, but that's not really a fair comparison as I have a pretty strong bias. :)

    I hope you can find some around your area. Good luck!