This Polish jellied pigs feet recipe -- known variously as zimne nogi (which literally means "cold legs"), studzienina, zimne stopy ("cold feet"), galareta z nóżek ("jelly legs")
-- demonstrates the peasants' attempt to emulate the aspic-covered gourmet dishes of the aristocracy or szlachta
. It also demonstrates their frugal approach to cooking and using every part of an animal, now being espoused by modern chefs as nose-to-tail eating. Jellied pigs feet exist in most Eastern European cuisines and in other parts of the world, especially the United Kingdom where they are known as trotters.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Refrigeration: 12 hours
Total Time: 14 hours, 30 minutes
Yield: 6 servings Jellied Pigs Feet
- 1 1/2 pounds split pigs feet, cleaned
- 1 pound lean pork like loin
- 1 wloszczyzna (soup greens)
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 black peppercorns
- 3 allspice berries (optional)
- 2 minced cloves garlic (or to taste)
- 1 tablespoon salt (or to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon marjoram
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon gelatin dissolved in 1/2 cup cold water
- Horseradish (optional)
- Lemon (optional)
- Marinated mushrooms (optional)
- In a large pot, place pigs feet and just enough water to barely cover the feet. Add peeled peeled soup greens, bay leaf, peppercorns, allspice, garlic and salt. Bring to a boil, skimming off any foam. Add pork loin, again bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until feet meat is falling off the bones.
- Remove the meat from the water and debone it. Strain broth through gauze and place in a clean pot. Dice the cooked carrots from the soup greens and the meat into small pieces. Return diced meat and carrots to the broth along with marjoram and more crushed garlic and salt and pepper, if desired. Bring to a boil and add dissolved gelatin, stirring until well incorporated. Cool slightly and pour into pour into molds, small bowls or ramekins. Refrigerate overnight.
- When ready to serve, unmold onto serving platter or individual plates. Garnish with greens or parsley, if desired, and serve with vinegar, horseradish, lemon and marinated mushrooms to be used at the discretion of the diner.