Monday, March 24, 2014

Pork neck bones were only item on the old meat rack, so I'm using the meat in a lentil soup

    I did a quick swing by Kroger this morning in hopes of finding some deals on the old meat rack. The only thing they had was pork neck bones marked down to 50 percent off, so $3.56 for 3.5 pounds.
    I've never cooked a pork neck bone before. They look a little like some of the ribs I've seen, so I thought maybe I could barbecue them. I got on my phone and did a quick Internet search and found where someone suggested I could simmer them for several hours and the meat would fall off the bones. The meat could then be used to make a lentil soup.
    So I came home, chopped an onion fine, sauteed it and some mushrooms in a quarter-stick of butter, added 12 cups of water and a couple of big teaspoons of beef base along with rosemary and other spices, and then added the pork neck bones to simmer. They are simmering at fairly low heat even as I type.
    I've never cooked lentils before, but the package says they only need about 20 minutes. So late this afternoon I'll fish out the pork neck bones, remove any remaining meat and continue to simmer the broth until suppertime. I'll throw in the lentils 20 or 30 minutes before it's time to eat. Some recipes call for a can of diced tomatoes. I'll let Lucy decide on whether or not to add any.
    Check back late tonight and I'll report on how it was!

    UPDATE: I promised an update on how dinner turned out. It was good, and the neckbones had a lot of meat on them. However, I had to dip out the bones and sort through the meat and mushrooms by hand. Even then some little bones got through.
    Next time I will use smoked pork rather than fresh and strain it. I'll lose the meat doing this but still get all the flavor. While straining I'll saute the onion and mushrooms, pour the liquid back in and let it simmer for an hour. The mushrooms do add a lot of flavor, but have to be simmered.

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