Slow-braised pigs' cheeks with parsnip purée

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By: Anton Edelmann From: Market Kitchen

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This recipe is classed as intermediate

Rating 2.98 / 5 (184 votes)

Prep time:
40 min
Cook time:
4 hrs 30 min

Pig's cheeks become very tender and gelatinous with long, slow cooking in Anton Edelman's recipe


1. For the pigs' cheeks: season the pigs' cheeks and dust with a little flour. Heat some olive oil in a large ovenproof pan and fry the cheeks until golden-brown on both sides. Remove from the pan and set aside.

2. Add the onions, leek, celery, carrots and garlic and fry gently until lightly browned. Add the tomato purée and a little of the red wine. Reduce until the tomato purée starts to caramelise and darken. Carry on adding the wine in stages, reducing between each addition until the sauce is rich and dark.

3. Preheat the oven to 140C/gas 1.

4. Return the cheeks to the pan and add pour over just enough brown stock to cover. Add the peppercorns, caraway seeds and bay leaf and bring to a simmer.

5. Cover with a lid and cook in the oven for 4 hours. Stir every hour or so, adding a little more brown stock if it starts looking dry.

6. Remove the cheeks and pass the sauce through muslin into a clean pan. Bring to the boil and reduce to a good consistency. Season with salt and pepper.

7. For the parsnip puree: put the parsnips in a pan with the milk and the same quantity of water. Bring to the boil and cook until very tender.

8. Put the parsnips in a blender with a little of the cooking liquid and the butter. Blend for about 10 minutes, until very smooth. Season.

9. For the carrots: boil the carrots in salted water until just tender. Drain and refresh in iced water. Warm through with a knob of butter before serving.

10. To serve, put a spoonful of parsnip purée on the plate. Cut a cheek at an angle and arrange on top. Pile on some carrot batons and balance a crisp slice of pancetta on top.


For the pigs’ cheeks

  • 4 pigs' cheeks, trimmed of fat
  • flour, for dusting
  • olive oil, for frying
  • 2 onions, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1/2 leek, outside leaves removed, washed and cut into 1 cm cubes
  • 1 large carrot, peeled, cut into 1cm cubes
  • 2 sticks celery, cut into 1 cm cubes
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • 100 g tomato purée
  • 1/2 bottles dry red wine
  • 300 ml brown stock, or enough to cover
  • 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 slices pancetta, fried until crisp

For the parsnip puree

For the carrots

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Latest Comment


Cooked pigs cheeks for the first time with this recipe and have to cook it again as my husband keeps going on about how nice it was. So easy, and yummy, and I don't normally like pork.

oliviaB57014 oliviaB57014  Posted 26 Aug 2011 8:27 PM

Absolutely delicious! Easy to make, fantastically tender. My first time cooking pork cheeks, but will recommend to my friends. Don't be scared - try it.

splind splind  Posted 04 May 2010 1:40 PM

This has to be one of the most tasty meals I've tried, I'm definately going to be eating this again and again!!!
You have to try it!!!

ScottJ77771 ScottJ77771  Posted 31 Jan 2010 4:06 PM


Anonymous Anonymous Posted 28 Jun 2009 2:58 PM