Monday, August 23, 2010

U Jagušky part V: Moravian Sparrows

moravští vrabci = Moravian Sparrows = delicious.

chlupaté knedlíky = hairy dumplings = Yumtastic

So these aren't actually sparrows, the name comes from the small chunks of sparrow sized pork, which is stewed with onion, cumin, and garlic. On the side is Zeli = cabbage, a slightly sweeter Czech version of sauerkraut. This is probably my favorite sauerkraut I've had in the world so far. The hairy dumplings are named this because they are made with grated potatoes. More on this in my Dumplings post.

This is one of my all time favorite Czech meals. Simple, easy, and filling. The sauce is the braising liquid and it all perfectly balances each other, the nice dense potato dumplings, the zing of the fresh zeli, long stewed pork shoulder that falls apart when the fork gets near it. Lets be honest, it would be more healthy with a little green, but I could eat this for lunch every day and never get tired of it. This one I may have to make for myself when I get home.

Here is a recipe I cobbled together

600 g pork shoulder(some recipes are 50/50 belly and shoulder)
15 g oil
100 g onion
4 cloves sliced garlic
6 g flour
1 tablespoon tomato paste or ketchup
(optional but a little vinegar would go along way here)

Pork cut into uniform chunks. Finely chop onions and fry in oil until golden. Add the meat, dusting it lightly flour and brown the meat. Pour some water, add salt, add tomato paste (ketchup), sliced garlic, cumin, and bake or simmer until the meat softens (1-2 hour). Occasionally stir and pour a little water. It'll be important to keep some water in the dish to keep the meat braising instead of baking, but if you add too much water you'll have to reduce the cooking liquid later to get a nice thick sauce. (Finish sauce at the last minute with a little pad of butter for sheen and creaminess)

Serve with potato dumplings and cabbage.


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