Braised Pork Shanks With a Pink Peppercorn Avgolemeno


This title is a mouthful, it fills the eye, satiates the belly. Some thought went into this dish as it’s my first foray into the Royal Foodie Joust, hosted monthly by Jenn, The Leftover Queen.

Each month a winner is chosen and the victor gets to choose the three key ingredients that must be used for the ensuing challenge.

Gild, The Voodoolily won in February and she chose pork, citrus and pink peppercorns as this month’s ingredients for the challenge.

I had no actual dish in my roster of dishes that would fit the bill so a little contemplating and experimentation was going to be way to go.

Call it cooking without a net, crap-shoot cuisine, blind-faith braising.

I chose to use a pork shank for this dish and although it looks like it’s huge for a single serving, relax…there’s a lot of bone there.

Marinading, searing and braising put this pork shank through a good workout and the final touch is added with a Greek flair, by adding a Avgolemeno Sauce to round out this dish.

I was very pleased with the look, aroma and taste of the dish. Look at the colour of the meat, the sauce coloured by pink peppercorns and sweet paprika.

The pork was rendered to a “fall off the bone” state, laid upon a body of tender chunks of celery root and braised leeks.

Braised Pork Shanks With a Pink Peppercorn Avgolemeno
(for 2)

2 pork shanks
2 sprigs of rosemary, bruised
1 tsp. chopped fresh sage
6 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup white wine + 1/4 cup for deglazing
1 tsp. salt
5 whole allspice
10 pink peppercorns, cracked
1 Tbsp. sweet paprika
2 bay leaves
1 cup of chicken stock
1/2 cup tomato passata
1/2 cup water
salt and pepper to taste
3 leeks, greens removed and white parts slit partway sidesways (to remove sand & grit)
1 celery root, peeled and cut into chunks

Avgolemeno Sauce

2 eggs
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 Tbsp. flour
1/8 tsp. of cold water

Preheated 400F oven

  1. In a bowl, add your rosemary, sage, garlic, wine, pink peppercorns, allspice, lemon, oil, salt and pepper and mix well.
  2. Score your pork shanks in a criss-cross manner so the fat renders during cooking.
  3. Rub the marinade all over the pork shanks and place in a bag and marinade for 2 hours in the fridge. Return to room temperature before cooking.
  4. Place a large skillet over medium high-heat and add some vegetable oil tosear the skin sides of your pork shanks and place in a roasting pan (with a cover). Discard the oil.
  5. Add your leftover marinade, celery root chunks and leeks to the roasting pan (around the pork shanks).
  6. Deglaze your skillet with the remaining white wine, tomato passata and stock, scraping up all the brown bits. Pour over the contents of the roasting pan.
  7. Season your vegetables with some salt and pepper and the sweet paprika.
  8. Cover the vessel with a lid and place in oven for 30 minutes at 400F and reduce to 350F for the remaining 90 minutes.
  9. Remove from the oven and keep the lid on to keep warm.
  10. Meanwhile in a bowl, prepare your Avgolemeno Sauce by beating your eggs and flour and while still beating, add your lemon juice plus 1/8 cup of cold water.
  11. Take a ladle of braising liquid and whisk into the Avgolemeno mixture.
  12. Add your Avgolemno Sauce to the braised pork and veggies and gently shake the pot back and forth for the sauce to penetrate the meal. Check and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

© 2008,
Peter Minakis

. All rights reserved.

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41 Comments for “Braised Pork Shanks With a Pink Peppercorn Avgolemeno”

Heather

says:

You and your avgolemeno. :) I’m so glad to see someone used something besides pork loin! That looks really good. I’ve eaten pork the last two nights for dinner, yet I’m still not sick of it.

Peter G

says:

What a lovely Greek inspired dish Peter…very creative I have to say! Beautiful shanks and delicious vegies with that tangy sauce! Bravo…and good luck.

Ben

says:

Wow Peter,

It looks amazing! The combination of herbs and the tenderness of the meat sounds heavenly, Hehehe.

Good luck in the joust, the entries have been amazing so far.

Judy @ No Fear Entertaining

says:

Oh that looks so good…I am working on my Joust entry as we speak (yeah right???) I want to try braising something. Maybe pork is the way to go!

Dhanggit

says:

this is the most beautiful pork shanks i ever saw..the photos are good enough to eat!! yummmmy..and you call this experiment wow!!im impressed!! i’ll surely note this recipe

noble pig

says:

Wow, this recipe is quite immpressive andd looks divine. This is a must try for me and potentially is something I could serve at my gourmet supper club. Thanks!

Peter M

says:

Cake, I had to look at quite a few recipes until I settled on this one.

Heather, braised pig rules!

Pete, thanks for your well wishes, mate.

Pixie, exercise your right to vote, I’ll give all a sexxy pose with the winning apron!

David, the dish was seriously emptied.

Ben thanks…I’m among tuff competition.

Maryann, the crispy crackling is the best!

Ruthbabes, thank you!

Judy, braising is hot!

Val, we’ll see what the peeps vote on.

Happy, no pro – just a lover of food.

Dhanngit, thank you so much!

Noble Pig, thanks for dropping by…here’s a friendly “oink”!

winedeb

says:

That is such a power packed dinner! Check out all of the ingredients, so flavorful! And pork shank, have not fixed that in awhile. Nice job!

Núria

says:

Bravo Chico!!!! I bet it was magnífico!!! And that sauce is sinny… I would use a whole baguette to clean that plate :D
Not so bad for an experiment!!!!

Rosie

says:

Oh I just love the crispy crackling on the pork. I am certainly feasting with my eyes with you wonderful pictures Peter!

JennDZ - The Leftover Queen

says:

Wow Peter, and what a foray it is! I love your use of avgolemeno for this dish – you just had to do it didn’t you!!! I do have some questions about how you get it to NOT cook once it touches hot food – you will see what I mean once I get to my post today…but this looks great and thanks for your support! ;)

Peter M

says:

Deb, pork shank is underused. It’s really not that much for one person as their’s a lot of bone.

Nuria, I call it luck and perhaps some cooking wisdom.

Elly, the competition is stiff.

Rosie, I’m happy I got crackling out of the dish.

Glam, I’ll catch you!

Allen, If I win…I’ll take pics of me wearing nothing but the apron!

Jenn, thanks…I should have joined RFJ earlier. As for Avgolemeno, I assume you mean the danger of turning it to scrambled egg? Email me and I’ll solve your Avgolemeno challenges.

maybahay

says:

peter, i do love your dishes and the way you present them. they always look rustic, home-cooked and delicious. makes me want to knock on your door and sit at the dinner table…

katiez

says:

Looks and sounds wonderful! Lemon and white wine make everything/anything wonderful…