Somm Time's Crispy Pig's Ears

pig-earsIf you’re in the mood for an inspired glass of wine, served only by sommeliers, in a fun and unpretentious way, run to Somm Time! This eclectic find in Midtown East should be on your must-visit wine bar list. While you’re there, taste Chef Angie Berry’s Crispy Pig’s Ears served with my favorite Riesling of all time, our 2002 Trittenheimer Altärchen Riesling Spätlese Trocken from Weingut Milz in the Mosel. Start this recipe the day ahead of when you’ll be serving it as the ears have to rest overnight. You’ll want to serve them freshly fried with crudité and don’t skip out on the accompanying chili aioli!


Pig’s Ears
(Braising Method)

5 tablespoons of canola oil
4 onions, chopped
1 head of celery, chopped
4 carrots, peeled and chopped
8 cloves of garlic
1 quart of white wine
1/4 cup of mustard seeds
1/4 cup of black peppercorn
4 bay leaves
1 bunch of thyme
10 pounds of pig ears
Water

1. In a large rondeau or sauté pan, add canola oil. Place the onions, celery, carrots, and garlic in the pot and stir. Continue to cook until the vegetables are caramelized, stirring occasionally.

2. Deglaze with white wine. Add the mustard seeds, black peppercorn, bay leaves, and thyme. Continue to cook for approximately 20 minutes. Add the pig ears and add enough water to cover the pig ears entirely.

3. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for approximately 2½ to 3 hours – until you can easily puncture a pig ear with your finger.

4. Let cool in the cooking liquid for 30 minutes. Then, remove the ears from the liquid and let dry on sheet pans lined with parchment.

5. Let sit overnight in the fridge. Cut the pig ears into small strips.


Pig’s Ears
(Frying Method)

1 cup of all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons of potato starch
4 tablespoons of harissa powder
1/2 tablespoon of salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup of buttermilk
Canola oil for frying

1. In a bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients using a whisk.

2. Transfer the buttermilk to a bowl. Dip the pig ears in the buttermilk and then dredge in the seasoned flour.

3. Remove any excess flour and deep fry in canola oil. The oil should be at 350°F when frying the pig ears.

4 Fry for approximately 4 minutes, until golden brown. Using a slotted spoon or spider, remove from oil and transfer to a paper towel-lined tray. Finish with more salt and pepper.


Chili Aioli
(yield 1 quart)

1/2 cup of cornichons, chopped
1/2 cup of Dijon mustard
1 cup of goat horn chilies, chopped
1 cup of mayonnaise

In a bowl, combine all ingredients with a whisk and set aside.

2 cups of basil leaves
2 cups of mint leaves
2 cups of parsley leaves
1/4 cup of ice water
2 tablespoon of olive oil

In a blender, add the herbs and blend. Add the ice water to the herbs. Once the herbs are completely puréed, slowly add the olive oil. Transfer the herb purée into the mayonnaise-mustard mixture. Combine with a whisk until well incorporated. Season with salt and pepper.