We don’t always support taking life advice from Homer Simpson, but he’s right about one thing: pork is awesome, and it’s incredibly versatile. You can make a great sausage with pork (don’t worry, we’ve got a guide for that). And then there are the ribs. We have a whole collection of rib recipes to keep your grill busy all summer—a few of our favorite include char-smoked baby back ribs and Kansas City-style spareribs with a sweet and spicy barbecue sauce. And how about sandwiches? Start your day off right with a biscuit sandwich with collard greens, marbleized eggs, espresso aioli, and eight slices of salty pancetta. For lunch, move onto our decadent porchetta sandwich with hazelnut gremolata or banh mi with seasoned pork and Vietnamese-style ham and pork roll.
Braised Pork Shank (Stinco di Maiale)
Pork shanks are braised with chicken stock, beer, and plenty of aromatics, including fresh rosemary, and finished with parsley and lemon zest in this hearty dish from celebrated Portland restaurant Nostrana. Get the recipe for Braised Pork Shank (Stinco di Maiale)»
The go-to Chinese filling: juicy pork mixed with the fresh onion flavor of garlic chives. Try to find a fatty blend of ground pork; it will improve the filling’s flavor and juiciness. Chopped garlic chives, which have a peppery raw-garlic flavor, and fresh ginger cut through the rich meat. Make sure the dumplings are completely sealed and devoid of air bubbles to prevent any leaks during boiling. This recipe is adapted from The Dumpling Galaxy Cookbook. Get the recipe for Classic Pork and Chive Dumplings »
Spicy Creole Pickled Pig’s Trotters
Natural gelatin released by pig’s trotters during cooking gives them a jellied consistency. In Creole cuisine, they were traditionally served chilled as an hors d’oeuvre or battered and fried like chicken. While trotters do not contain a lot of pure meat, their skin and cartilage are edible and—once pickled—loaded with tart, porky flavor. The silky pickings from one or two make an excellent addition to beans or braised greens, like the delicious sweet and sour collards Chef Jean-Paul Bourgeois makes at his restaurant Blue Smoke in New York City. Get the recipe for Spicy Creole Pickled Pig’s Trotters »
Traditionally this dish is part of many celebrations of life in Mexico as well as US border towns from birthdays to weddings to large family gatherings. When it’s made at home or for a party it is best to serve it family style. Posole can remain in the stockpot and be served directly from it with the accompaniments at the table where guests, friends and family can add as much or as little of the ingredients as they please. Get the recipe for Posole Rojo »
Pasta in Italy is served lightly coated, not completely covered, in sauce. To avoid overburdening delicate homemade noodles, cut them about ¾ inch wide to help pick up the sauce, and toss gently with spoonfuls of sauce and pasta water a little at a time. Fresh pig’s blood, used in both the pasta dough and ground sausage mix, can be found in Hispanic, Eastern European, or Chinese markets, though you may have to call a few to track it down. Get the recipe for Blutnudeln with Blood Sausage Bolognese »
jeyuk bokkeum stir fried pork
A three-day brining, smoking, and charring process adds incredible flavor to these ribs from chef Chris Shepherd of Underbelly in Houston. The result tastes like grilled bacon.
2) Braise or Steam Meats and Fish
Pork and Duck Sausage
Most sausage recipes call for a meat mixture that is about 30 percent fat—using too much can yield a link that is more greasy than luxurious. Here, Russell Moore of Camino in Oakland, California, combines pork belly with rich duck liver and skinless duck breast—fatty duck skin is too tough—for a perfectly tender sausage.
You can get a bowl of green chili most anywhere in the American southwest, but New Mexicans are particularly proud of their chile verde, with its hunks of juicy pork shoulder and tart tomatillo-based sauce. The dish gets its oomph from green chiles, ideally the gorgeous ones grown around the town of Hatch, of which New Mexicans are likewise justly proud. Get the recipe for Chile Verde »
Rye’s Red Chili
Pulled pork stands in for the burnt ends of barbecued brisket in this robust Kansas City-style bean chili inspired by one from the restaurant Rye KC in Leawood, Kansas.