A few years back when maria and I finally had a chance and the time to visit Germany
after being away for 14 years, our friend’s, the Henning’s and the Otto’s took us to lunch
into Stuttgart, to a restaurant named “Ochsen Willi”. This place has been a famous
fixture of this city for many decades, mainly because of it’s Schweine Haxen.
Here is a Picture of Maria attacking her small portion of haxe during that wonderful lunch :
Traditionally and ideally, this would be done on a spit roast, which I don’t have.
So I used the alternative method, slowly roasting the knuckle (or ham hog) in the oven.
I brined the meat in a brine of kosher salt, cayenne pepper, cider and red wine
for two day’s. Then I removed it from the brine, padded the meat dry and seasoned
it with more cayenne and a good amount’s of garlic powder and onion powder.
I roasted the knuckle at 420 degrees for 30 minute, then turned the heat to 260 degrees
for 3 hours, after which I turned the heat up to 420 again for 30 minute.
Usually you want a roast to rest for about 20 minutes before you cut into it,
but not this baby. I’d like to see anybody who can resist the temptation to just whack
into this hunk of porkness as soon as it comes out of the oven.
In Germany, we either have this as an elaborate mal with jus, red cabbage or
white cabbage (in the form of sauerkraut, kraut salat or bayrisch kraut) and
semmelknoedel (Braed Dumpling), or a potato side dish such as puree, dumplings,
roasted. Most times however, a simple rustic bread and a good mustard on the side
is all that’s needed to achieve culinary bliss :-)