That Perfect Eisbein - Crisp & Golden Brown

What is an Eisbein

An Eisbein, is pickled pork hock, the hindquarter hock is more meaty.I t is considered to be one of the great traditional dishes in both Germany and also Baveria.

It's popularity however extends throughout the world, wherever there are pork eaters.

Traditional Boiled Eisbein

Firstly wash the Eisbeins in cold running water.

Then place them in a large saucepan, so that they are half covered with water.

Add 4 tablespoons of brown sugar, 3 large onions, peeled and quartered, 1 teaspoon of ground black pepper, 4 bay leaves, allow 2 peeled whole large potatoes per person.

Bring the saucepan to a boil and then cover and reduce the temperature to an simmer for about 20 minutes. Keep checking that the water level does not drop down to far. Turn the Eisbeins over and then, cover and let simmer for a further 15 minutes, keep an eye on the potatoes so that they do not overcook, remove them if they are cooked.

Check to see that the meat is soft and tender. this is done by gently inserting a boning or steak knife into the thick pad of meat at the base of the Eisbein, hold it there for a count of thirty seconds, remove and touch the flat part of the blade with your thumb, if it is hot to touch, then the meal is ready.

Transfer the meat onions and potatoes from the saucepan, to the serving plates.

Serve hot with a side dish of Sauerkraut and good German Mustard.

Grilled Eisbein

Preheat your oven to 220 degrees celsius. while the Eisbein is simmering away.

Keep the pototoes and onions warm.

Once you have removed the Eisbeins from the saucepan place it on the rack of your roasting pan.

Place it in the centre of your oven and let it cook for between 10 to 20 minutes, you will hear a poppin sound eminating from the stove as the skin dries out and the pockets of air blister it. Remove when golden brown and very crispy.

Enjoy

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Comments 58 comments

TetonRose profile image

TetonRose 8 years ago from Utah

This sounds delicious. I love German cooking!


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks, it is fun sharing my recipies to all.


AndyBaker profile image

AndyBaker 8 years ago from UK

Sounds delicious !


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 8 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment, it is indeed delicious.


Fleischer 8 years ago


terenceyap07 profile image

terenceyap07 7 years ago from Singapore

Hi Rodney,

I just returned here to realize that I hadn't left a comment. (covers mouth in horror) I must really be growing old. LOL!

Thanks for sharing this recipe, my friend.

*smiles*


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks for remembering to come back Terence, but knowing that did means a lot. As an old English saying goes, 'You are a scholar and a Gentleman' Thanks


Shirley Anderson profile image

Shirley Anderson 7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

Eisbein is pork hocks? Although your picture makes them look scrumptous, I have a strong memory of my mother boiling up pork hocks and white beans for my step-father. I never, ever could eat them because of the smell. Now that I'm grown, I realize that it was probably a combination of those beans and the fact that mom seldom used any seasoning. The whole dish looked so white and bland, but in your pic it looks like a nice rich stock. I may have to rethink this.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Shirley, yes early childood memories of some of our strongest memories, and from that mental blocks against trying to eat a certain dish.

Every time my step mother in law made banana loaf, this was thirty plus a few years ago, I suffered "morning sickness". I was not female and definitely not pregnant, and it was not synpathy for my fiancé as our first born was only born 3 years or so later.

I have since, made it myself, been in the house when other people made it, something in the way or an ingredient set me off. This wasa some 25 or so years later.

Let me know how it turns out!


Adam 7 years ago

thank you for this really awesome looking dish. being a first timer i hope i will get this right. i have everything preped and ready to go, it looks like i have to boil first then roast as above. i hope so, ill keep an eye on it to make sure it dosnt get over cooked :). will comment back in a few hours after its in my tummy.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thats the way to do it, hope that you enjoy and get it right first time. Good luck Adam


grant 7 years ago

hi


GBH 7 years ago

howzit

just got back from SA had a eisbien grilled one of my fav meals . wanted to make one but don't really know how had a look on youtube and video jug no one has put a video on so why don't you be the first and show us step by step and the end result

thanx


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Grant, Hi there.

GBH, hope you enjoyed your visit to SA.

As for the video of How To Eiesbe4in, it may be on the cards next time I do an Eisbein, maybe by the end of August, So watch Youtube.

Thanks for the comments guys.


Craig 7 years ago

Seems like South Africans are keen on the old Eisbein there Rodney. Took the bull by the horns (or rather the pig by the trotters) and gave it a bash myself in Johannesburg. It worked really well. Definitely needs roasting though, to get the crackling crispy and tasty. I can also recommend adding a cup of light ale to the stock, it adds a bit of depth to the flavour

As we say in South Africa, really lekker!


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 7 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Craig, as the say in South Africa, 'net soos jy smaak!' Yes the addirion of some ale makes for a tasty stock, next time try a good strong Cider, do not go hunting for it as it is too mild, so rather go to the heat of the metal industry, that should do the trick just fine.

Find the cryptically disguised brand name. Cannot upset google.


Duncan 6 years ago

Hi Rodney

Thanks for the recipe! Just one question - which is better to get that lovely crispy skin, smoked or pickled eisbein?


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Duncan, smoked type for that richer brown colour as the smoke does stain the rind slightly. Taste wise not much difference, however the plain pickled also comes out golden brown when the skin crisps up, just lick the crackling on a piece of roast pork.

As you prefer as I say, also depends on what is available as smoked products are some places more difficult to obtain.

Thanks for popping by.


Piet 6 years ago

Rodney, I have made Eisbein in the past, admittingly not all the ingredients as you have set was used this time I want to try your ingredients and put it to the test as it sounds delicious, thanks for the Tips and your recipes.

Piet


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Piet thanks for the comment, thank you for wanting to try it my way, as recently made another and it still worked out perfectly.


louisa 6 years ago

Hi Rodney, my husband is Austrian and this our all time favourite dish. This is the perfect recipe for Eisbein.

Thanking u Kindly in Advance.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Hi Louise, thanks for that comment, I really appreciate it. I was the Eisbein king at on stage cooked and sold 14 of them all perfectly in a matter of 4 hours one Friday.


Eddie 6 years ago

Hi Rodney. Iam going to make this tonight for me and my son. Seeing as the rest of the family do not appreciate pork that much. Only thing is I will try this recipe with fresh pork knuckles and not smoked or pickled ones. Hope it will work, but we love eisbein doesn't matter how it comes out!!


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Eddie, It will not be quite the same but, you will have an interesting tasting pork pot roast which will not be be an Eisbein, more of a pork knuckle broil.

Please let me know hoe it turned out.

Thanks


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Eddie, It will not be quite the same but, you will have an interesting tasting pork pot roast which will not be be an Eisbein, more of a pork knuckle broil.

Please let me know hoe it turned out.

Thanks


Mark West 6 years ago

Hi Rodney, I had a lovely Eisbein in a restaurant in Ladybrand FS South Africa recently. Just picked up a smoked Eisbein from the supermarket and had no ideas how to cook it - Now I plan to follow your recipe .. thanks


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Mark, thanks for the comment and wish you a hearty appetite and good temperatures to get it just right.


Jade Cheemee 6 years ago

hi i just bought a smoked Eisbein and wanted to no if i still need to boil it?


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Jade, yes you would still need to boils them as directed.

Thanks for the comment.


STUART SCULLY 6 years ago

I can never get the "crackling" right! No matter what I do it comes out soggy. What am I doing wrong? I normally just put the eisbein / pork in to an oven preheated to about 230 deg. and let it cook, but the crackling never comes out just as i like it. Maybe it's because I don't boil it first?


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Stuart, Good luck with doing it as a boiled one first, another trick is to place at the very bottom of the stove and grill it.

Or slip it on the rotisserie attachment and put in the grill

This is after you are sure that the meat is cooked through.

Good luck and thanks for the comment.


Carol 6 years ago

Hi Ridney, your recipe looks yummy! My mother-in-law is German so I'm under a little pressure to produce the goods. I think your recipe is going to help me produce a perfect eisbein - Thank you


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Carol, thanks for the comment, good cooking and hope that it keeps Ma-in-law happy and smiling.


vicki winkel 6 years ago

i made the dish then roast the hocks.They just how i remember my mother inlaw made them.So this recipe i will keep and past on too my children.YUMMY YUMMY


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Vicki, Thank you for that info, I am pleased that I was able to firstly recall the flavours and taste of the past, and now have a recipe for your children to teach and give it onto their children one day.

Thanks very much for the comment.


Arnold 6 years ago

I have unpickled pork hock, how would I pickle them?

The hock is also skined, would that make a difference


Nannette de Waal 6 years ago

Rodney

How do you cut the meat after cooking? I am planning to make it for a lot of people (20+). so it needs to be easy to dish up.

Sounds deliscious.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Nannette, Thanks for the query, normally I make one per person, but with that number you will be cooking all day. So I suggest that you cook about six to eight and just hack of large chunks, It is after all that type of food. Best to do them boiled then as i will be easier to separate.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Arnold, an unpickle skinned hock would taste just fine slow roasted like a lamb shank. put in a deep roasting pan cover with some potatoes and onions with some rosemary and a bit of water and a splash of olive oil, cover and bake for a couple of hours at 70 degrees celsius. Check after an hour, If the meat is falling of the bone it is ready.

Hope that helps you.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 6 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Arnold, an unpickle skinned hock would taste just fine slow roasted like a lamb shank. put in a deep roasting pan cover with some potatoes and onions with some rosemary and a bit of water and a splash of olive oil, cover and bake for a couple of hours at 70 degrees celsius. Check after an hour, If the meat is falling of the bone it is ready.

Hope that helps you.


Hennie 5 years ago

Hi Rodney,

Thank you for the recipe, it worked out great.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 5 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Great meal is it not.

Thanks for trying it and making a comment.


Hannatjie 5 years ago

Hi Rodney, we stay in S.A. I bought a few eisbeins and want to try out your recipe thankyou! I've never made it before.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 5 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks for reading up this recipe, good luck and hope you enjoy the meal.


Melvin 5 years ago

I got to try this dish in SA with a good friend and am now going to try it at home in the US. I loved it and want more!!!! everyone needs to try this wonderful dish.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 5 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks Melvin, If you are a meat eater and a prork lover yes,this has to be one for "The Bucket List".

Thanks


Cor Blimey 5 years ago

Well done, Rodney. You brought back memories of the eisbein at the Munchnerhaus Restaurant that used to be in Braamfontein. Those were the days!


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 5 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Indeed, Cor Blimey those were the days, my friend, but being one of the Hillbrow okies, I frequented that Swiss run Lilli Marlene, startes off with their Peas soup a large soup bowl with thick slices of Franfurters(Hey I still need to write a Hub on how to make that one),several slices of dark rye bread ands schmalz. A Stien of Bavarian Beer or as they spelt it, Bier, and an Eisbien (the size was from huge to gigantic!!!!!! Served on a separate large platter was the Saurkrut and Dumplings apful sauce and zenf.


sue k 4 years ago

What a pleasant surprise! I am from South Africa, now in New Zealand (They don't know what Eisbein is over here)Had such longing for it that I started a search and WoH here you are!!! Will go hunting for smoked Hock this week-end,cant wait.Thanks!!!!!


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 4 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Sue K, glad that you found the recipe with ease, hope that you can find the hocks just as easily! A suggestion is that you go to an old fashioned Butchery that makes hiscown Bacon. Happy hunting.


Jenny R 4 years ago

AAAH! the Munchener Haus! Good, if hazy, memories.

My husband makes eisbein but takes a short cut and adds the cabbage, carrots and potatoes when he boils it. I've seen more appetising meals in Germany and intend trying this one. Better not do it too well or he'll won't cook again!

There's a similar restaurant East of the boerewors curtain, called the Armourer's Place.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 4 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks Jenny R, I hzve heard of thst one If it is the same p

Ace on the way to Springs from Jhb, never tried it.

He tjat you achieve the success with the recipe!

Tjanks for the comment.


Bernice 3 years ago

I came upon your recipe for Eisbein, as I have this habit of buying on specials, and our local Food Lovers Market had them going at R29.00 per kilo, and seen as though I am having a dinner party I thought I would give it a bash. As I am a complete Food Network junkie, I have taken your recipe, and tweaked it with some other ideas put up by other readers. Will definitely let you know, and I will even take a pic. Today I am testing it, so my poor man gets to eat it twice! Thanks for the advice :)


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 3 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks Bernice,

I appreciate your choosing me as your base for the recipe! I have noticed that Food Lovers do have specials on there Eisbeins from time to time. I obtain mine from a butchery in Edenglen.

So please do send me a copy of the picture if you would be so kind, I am at rodney.fagan@gmail.com.

Good luck and hope that hubby enjoys it as much as I do.

Thanks for the comment, and visit.


Allan 2 years ago

Im cooking the Eisbein tonight , my good ZA woman of 16years tells me to use Ginger Beer not sweet water so here goes nothing. Let you know later.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 2 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks for the visit and the tip, though must admit I have not heard of that one before, though it does sound as if it would add for an interesting flavour.

Let us know how it comes out.

Good luck.


Rodney Yates 2 years ago

going to cook eisbein tonight using this recipe.


Just_Rodney profile image

Just_Rodney 2 years ago from Johannesberg South Africa, The Gold Mine City Author

Thanks Rodney, I know you will enjoy it. :-)

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