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Friday, 8 March 2013


  Kepler's Irish-Canadian great grandfather's birthday: March 6

Bryan says that, when they went anywhere in the car, he couldn’t see out the window because of the smoke from his father’s pipe. 

 Peter and Kay

Bryan and his dad

All the kids


I never met Bryan’s dad, but I’m sure I would have liked him.  Bryan and Maureen both said, “He ate anything that was put in front of him.”   What could be nicer than that? 

And he used to eat Banana Pepper Sandwiches . . . one of my favourites!

 ALSO Orange and Onion Sandwiches . . .  I just never thought of adding oranges. J

Bryan and Maureen both remember their dad enjoying stinky cheeses – including Blue Cheese . . .  so my dad would have gotten along with Peter, too.

 The clincher:  Peter liked HEAD CHEESE – Maureen remembers Kay making it for him!

Last Christmas, I used Savella Stechishin’s recipe for Drahli  (Jellied Pig’s Feet) and it was good, but the girls thought my usual recipe was better so here's the recipe I'll be returning to . . .


1.5 kg pork hocks     3 lbs.
8 cups water
¼ cup parsley sprigs
1 large onion
1 large carrot
2 garlic cloves
2 tsp. salt
6 peppercorns
1 tsp. whole allspice   
1 tsp. thyme
2 cloves
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp vinegar

1.  Rinse the hocks.  Cover with cold water and add salt.  Bring to a boil and skim off foam.
2.  Slice onion and garlic. 
3.  Reduce the heat to very low and add sliced onion, garlic, peppercorns and other spices.  Cover.  Simmer very slowly for 3 hours. This is important as rapid boiling will make the broth cloudy.
4. Peel carrot and slice.  Add to the broth and simmer very slowly another 2 hours.  You may want to uncover the pot for the last hour in order to slowly reduce the broth but be careful to keep enough broth to cover the meat.  You may not need to uncover the pot at all.
Simmer until reduced to  2 1/2  cups of liquid.  This is important.  If it doesn’t reduce enough it will not jell properly.

5.  Remove meat and chop.  Put in loaf pan. 
6.  Strain the broth, add vinegar, and pour over the meat.
7.  Refrigerate. 
8.  Serve with vinegar as an appetizer or a main dish.