One of the things I miss most here are the unusual cuts that other countries utilise a lot more. Short ribs, oxtail and pork leg. Germans are famous for pork shank, called Schweinshaxe and Koreans do Jokbal.

Jokbal is an ‘anju’ which is food eaten when you drink, how civilised is that?
It’s usually the whole leg of pork, braised for hours in soy sauce, spices, onion, garlic etc until the meat becomes super tender and the meat absorbs the flavours.
It is then thinly sliced and served with ssamjang, chilli and garlic slices you then wrap up in some lettuce to eat.
You eat the skin as the collagen is also good for your skin apparently!

It’s a long process but not very difficult at all. Give it a go and definitely have some Soju with it.

1kg pork shank
1 large brown onion, unpeeled and cut in half
2 apples cut in half
3 stalks of spring onion
5 cloves of garlic
2 tbs brown sugar
2 tbs rice syrup or honey
250 ml soy sauce

For the seasoning pouch:

6 dried jujube (red dates)
1 cinnamon stick
1 small ginger sliced
Tsp of peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 star anise
2 tbs ground coffee

To serve:
Sliced garlic and chilli

Prep 24h before:
Soak pork shanks in water overnight and refresh water a couple of times, it’s to get rid of the blood and bone fractures.

If your shank has hairs, shave it off (I know lol)

Boil the pork in water for about 20 min, drain, wash the pork thoroughly and clean the pot. Put pork back in the pot, add all the above ingredients. I’ve put the spices in some cheesecloth and tied it but you can just let it float in the stock. Add water until pork is covered or almost covered, depending on how big your pot it. Boil on high for half an hour, then cover and simmer for 2h.

Let the pork cool down slightly before you cut the meat away from the bone. Then very thinly slice it and arrange on a plate. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and spring onion.

Place a slice of pork in a lettuce leaf, add a bit of ssamjang, garlic and chilli, wrap and eat in one – Korean style.

About the Author


Cardiff-based home cook sharing authentic Korean recipes with anyone who is curious about Korean culture and flavours.

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