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What’s cooking today: Pork knuckle braised with mace,...



What’s cooking today: Pork knuckle braised with mace, marsala & apple

Pork knuckle braised with onions, apple, marsala, mace and thyme. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

Slow braising on a winter’s afternoon fills the house with tempting aromas, perfect for serving up once you’ve lit the fire to settle in for the evening.


(Recipe for one; multiply as required)


2 Tbsp olive oil

1 pork knuckle per person

1 onion, sliced

2 apples, cored and sliced (no need to peel)

1 cup/ 250 ml marsala

1 cup/ 250 ml chicken or vegetable stock

3 or 4 blades of mace/ or ½ tsp ground nutmeg

3 sprigs of thyme

Salt and white pepper to taste


Preheat the oven to 200℃.

Score the skin of the knuckle in a diamond pattern, being careful not to cut through the meat.

Heat olive oil in a heavy pot that has a lid. Brown the shank well on all sides.

Add the onions all around and simmer, stirring, for a few minutes.

Add the slices of apple.

Heat the stock and add the marsala. Pour this into the pot. Add the mace and thyme.

Season with salt and pepper, lightly. You can adjust the seasoning later, once it’s cooked.

Cover and put it in the oven.

After 10 minutes, turn the heat down to 160℃ or 170℃.

Braise for about 3 hours or until the meat is fall-apart tender. Serve with shredded cabbage stir-fried with salt, pepper and one or two of those ground spices generally ignored in the spice cupboard. DM/TGIFood 

To enquire about Tony Jackman’s book, foodSTUFF (Human & Rousseau) please email him at [email protected] 

SUBSCRIBE: Our Thank God It’s Food newsletter is sent to subscribers every Friday at 6pm, and published on the TGIFood platform on Daily Maverick. It’s all about great reads on the themes of food and life. Subscribe here.


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