Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Potaje de Garbanzos Con Patas de Puerco (Chickpea & Pork Feet Stew)

Probably not that many people like "pig's feer", well in my household only my mother and me like pig's feet (my Dad and little sister aren't fans of it). My grandmother use to make this and she didn't like pig's feet she only made it for my grandpa my mother says. She would eat everything in the stew except the pig's feet and give them all to my mother and my grandpa who really really enjoyed it.

Me personally I love hearty, rich legume based stews, even though it is summer I just love them so much I eat them in summer and winter, I just turn on the AC full blast while I cook and eat it while pretending it's winter ha ha.

I haven't had this in years I think for more than 5 years. It's been so long that I don't even remember eating it! I was checking the fridge last night to see what to make the next day and I bumped into pigs feet. My mother said, "oh I remember your grandma used to make a stew with them, I don't remember how to make it you should give her a call", I did and am glad I did, I will make this more often and won't let it fade away from my family kitchen.

-1 lb./ about 2 cups dried garbanzos/ chickpeas (soaked overnight)
-2 1/2 lb. Pork feet cut in half (tell your butcher to cut them in half for you)
-2 medium to large potatoes or 4 small potatoes peeled and cut in half
-1 onion minced
-6 cloves of garlic pressed and minced or mashed to a paste in a mortar with a pestle.
-1 can 8 oz. tomato puree or blend some ripe tomato in a blender or grate a large tomato.
-1 green or red bell pepper or 1/2
-2 bay leaves
-1 teaspoons ground cumin
-1/2 -1 teaspoon "Bijol" (or in it's place saffron or ground achiote powder)
-1/2 tsp. ground black pepper (optional)
-Salt to taste

(1)Soak garbanzos overnight at least 12 hours by covering in at least 3 inches submerged into water with a huge palm full of salt, mix well.

(2)Next day rinse them well several times and get rid of water. Add new water and about 1 teaspoon salt. Set aside in a large pot. Just add enough water to cover garbanzos and pork feet. The garbanzos aren't gonna suck any more water they already did when soaking over night.

(3)To clean pork feet get pork feet, put in a medium pot add water and bring to a boil, boil for about 5 minutes. Drain it, rinse in cold water 3 times to cool down. Now wash again all of them by rubbing with vinegar and salt, swooshing around rubbing well. Drain and rinse each one individually and set aside in a bowl. This is done to get rid of all the impurities and the strong smell and taste.

(4)Now bring pot garbanzos to a boil mix in pork feet and an extra teaspoon of salt or salt to taste let it come to a strong boil, cover and simmer about 45 minutes to 1 hour on low heat or medium low. Only add enough water to cover pork feet well.

(5)Meanwhile chop up everything. When pork fetes and garbanzos are done, turn of while and leave covered while you do the rest.

(6)Heat olive oil on medium high, then sautee minced onion until translucent and some browns, then add garlic for about 2-3 minutes until golden and fragrant. Add tomato puree and bring to a boil. Add this to the garbanzos and cooked pork feet.

(7)Add bay leaves, cumin, black pepper, bijol, potatoes, and thickly julienned green bell pepper. Mix well. Turn on heat, bring to a boil and cover for 15-20 minutes.

(8)Taste it if it needs more salt or cumin. This stew is not suppose to be super loose or super thick. It will thicken later from all the gelatin from the bones of the pork feet that will be released over time. If you must thicken more simply take out a potato, blend it with sthe broth and add it back in to thicken.

NOTE: At my house we usually serve this with a bowl or plate of white rice on the side and a raw salad. Also you can eat it with bread instead if you wish or heck both bread and rice! It already has potatoes so why not haha. Let's load up on those carbs... just kidding about the carb loading part.


Núria said...

Nathan, this looks like Catalan food to me! It's so typical here to eat pork feet and garbanzos!!!! I'm surprised how similar our cuisines are :D

Nathan said...


Well alot of Cuban dishes are exactly the same or just "Cuban" versions of Spanish foods (like some ingredients will be replaced with ingredients that are easier to get ahold of here or more affordable and local to the Carribean)

I guess this is because there was huge Spanish migration to Cuba (particularily Western, Cuba like Havana) before the 1960's and also Cuba was one of the first as well as the last colonies of Spain on this side of the world.

And since many Cuban families have strong Spanish backrounds or Spanish relatives the food stays very similar, or heavely influenced.

Of course, now days food in Cuba is VERY DIFFERENT from Cuban food outside of Cuba because do to the communist dictatorship there isn't enough food and ingredients to prepare things the way they where done back then.

Also in Cuba I don't think there is many people of European backround left, most are black and "mulattos" since many of the European and Spanish people fled early on the one's who got stuck became less because they tend to have less children than the other black population there and also overtime there is less and less so they have to marry blacks or other stuff because there is no choice. (Geez I know it sounds racist but it's what I think and it's true haha)

Hmm what else, oh yeah and Cuban cooking from the Eastern Cuba is somewhat different, you'll see less Spanish influence and more Indigenous and African styles of cooking.

Nathan said...

Maybe I should make a Spanish food label, and put the dishes that are closely related to Spain or are Spanish under it to.

Núria said...

That was a history lesson!!!! :D Thanks Nathan!
I travelled to Cuba 14 years ago (aprox) and fell in love with the people there!!! I also had some wonderful dishes: with beans, of course and some white omeletes (they told us it was because the hens eated white fish flour)...
We also went to Cayo Largo for a nice rest and back to La Habana.

It's such a pity what has happened to the island due to the dictatorial regim.

I've got none relatives in Cuba (some of my family went to Canada), but I know of Catalans that had some ancestors emigrating to Cuba.