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Recipe: Pork Stock (Pork Ribs)

I use homemade vegetable stock when I cook porridge for the toddler, occasionally adding chicken bones when making the stock. So this vegetable-chicken stock is my first foray in stock and I thought that was it.

I never thought of making other stock, especially pork stock. It was until I needed pork stock as the base for ‘Gao Gei Egg Drop Soup’. Apparently, pork stock is a flavour enhancer that can be used as

  • a soup base (add water to stock to adjust taste),
  • for making stew, or
  • to stir-fry dishes.

Fun Fact: Broth or Stock?

Do the words broth and stock mean the same thing to chefs? According to foodnetwork.com, chicken stock tends to be made more from bony parts, whereas chicken broth is made more out of meat.

And according to marthastewart.com, stock is more intense than broth, having been cooked slowly to extract as much flavor as possible from meat or fish bones and aromatics.

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Prep and Cook Time (Serves 2)

Prep: 10 minutes

Cook: 4 to 4.5 hours (with stovetop cooker)

Preparation

Ingredients 

  • 500g pork ribs, chopped (by butcher)*
  • 2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine (I omitted because stock is for toddler)
  • 1 thumb ginger

*Refer to ‘Bonus Tips’ section

Cooking

  1. Blanch the pork ribs. Put them in boiling water and boil for 5 minutes to remove the scum.
  2. Add pork ribs, ginger, and Shaoxing wine into a large pot.
  3. Add water until the pot is 4/5 full. Cover and bring to a boil.
  4. Simmer over low heat for 3.5 to 4 hours (medium heat if electric stove). The broth should be boiling throughout so that you’ll get a semi-transparent instead of a clear soup.
  5. Check the broth every 30 minutes. If the water doesn’t cover the bones, add 2 cups of boiling water to it each time. Do not add any water during the final hour.
  6. At the end, the broth should be reduced to about 1/3 (or less) of the original volume.
  7. Transfer the pork broth/stock to a bowl to cool off completely. Discard ginger and pork bones. (Or you can leave it to cook the second batch.)
  8. Store it in an airtight container. Storage up to 2 weeks in fridge and up to 2 months in freezer.
  • (Optional) Leave the bones in the pot and cook another batch of stock.
    • Add water until the pot is 1/2 full. Bring the water to a boil.
    • Cover and cook for another 2 hours.
    • Broth won’t be as thick as the first time. You can use this broth, without adding water, to cook soup.

Bonus Tips

  • Buying the pork ribs:
    • Use pork leg bones. They contain marrow, which makes the stock flavourful.
    • Ask the butcher to chop the bones into parts, so the bones will release flavor quickly.
  • Ginger and Shaoxing wine eliminate the “raw-ness” of the pork ribs without adding a strong taste. Stock is supposed to be condensed and taste neutral, hence strong smelling spices and salt are excluded.

Recipe inspired by omnivorescookbook.com



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