And here is the pork cheek stew. It is loosely based on a recipe by the wonderful Nigel Slater from here – but he stipulates 8 – yes 8 pig cheeks for 4 people – is he using guinea pig cheeks? I used 2 cheeks for 4 people and that was more than enough – and we have generous portions.
Braised Pork Cheeks: 2 pork cheeks; 4 leeks, about 8 medium carrots (really add as many vegetables as you want – you can add other things such as celery and onion but I only had carrots and leeks as I ate all the celery last week and the onions were finished ages ago), red wine – 1/2 bottle or maybe more, some stock, 3 tbs flour, hedgerow jelly (or redcurrant jelly), bay leaves, thyme, olive oil.
Remove the skin from the pork cheeks – maybe cheeks from the butchers don’t have skin on them – ours do. Feed skin to dog. Do not cut off fat – you want the fat, the fat is the best bit.
Brown cheeks in some olive oil in a big casserole pan.
Remove cheeks. Gently soften the chopped vegetables in the pan.
When cooked a bit put the cheeks on top. Add in the bay leaves and thyme. Pour over the wine and stock to cover. Add a couple of tbs of flour, cover and cook in a medium oven for hours. After a few hours add in some jelly – about 4 tbs – and a bit more flour if the sauce is too liquidy. Cook until cheeks are so tender you can cut them with a spoon. Serve with mashed potato or bread or polenta might be nice. This is very rich and unctuous – proper winter food.