Sunday, 5 August 2012

Olympic Food Challenge: Lithuania - Braised Pigs Trotters with Sauerkraut

So far the Olympic Food Challenge has been kind to us.  We've eaten and cooked new ingredients and recipes and I've made my own cheese!  Although we have had misgivings about our ingredients, nothing so far has phased us quite the same way as tonight's meal from Lithuania, Kiaulës kojos troðkintos su kopûstais or Braised pigs trotters in sauerkraut.

I like offal generally and I firmly believe in nose to tail eating but this was a hard sell for Z.  I have been taunting her with some of the more squeamish recipes that I have found over the last week or two* but in the interest of continuing my food adventure I insisted that we gave trotters a try.

The recipe I found was simple but vague, so I looked around for more information on trotter cooking.  It seems to me that they require two hours no matter how you cook them so that was the time that I allowed.  The trotters were braised under a blanket of sauerkraut** and served with boiled potatoes.

Plantains were either bland and granular or slimy and mushy.  Breadfruit was quite palatable.  Okra is not as awful as I used to think it was.  Trotters were not great.  They where OK.  The vinegar from the sauerkraut cut through the skin and gristle.  The flesh, what there was of it, was delicious and tender as it should have been after two and a half hours cooking.  I understand why these cuts of meat are eaten, they are abundant and cheap*** and in cold climates they really would provide a lot of your calorific intake for the day.  I just can't see them slipping back into our repertoire.

Thank you Lithuania for broadening my horizons and giving me an excuse to try something new.  Please excuse me if I don't make this a family favourite meal.

*sheep's head soup anybody?
** a family favourite.
***I paid 40p for two trotters!

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