Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans

Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans - an easy one-dish meal that requires very little active cooking time and ensures the best flavor. | omnivorescookbook.comThe braised pork shank is so tender that the meat falls from the bone at the slightest touch. The rich sauce is enhanced by the velvety black beans. This is an easy one-dish meal that requires very little active cooking time and ensures the best flavor.

My fridge almost never runs out of braised meat. It is so easy to cook in large batches and freeze for later use. The recipe might look a bit long, but all you really need to do is to brown the meat, dump all the spices in, and let it cook for several hours.

I have posted quite a few braised recipes on my blog, including braised spare ribs, braised chicken, and braised duck leg. Those are all part of my Mom’s best series, which contains family recipes handed down from my grandma.

However, the recipe today is a bit different. It’s a recipe from my reader Steve, who learned it in a cooking class taught by Chef Ying Sak in Bangkok (Thanks, Steve, for sharing this wonderful recipe!). I cooked it last weekend, with a few small tweaks, and loved how it turned out. Today I’d like to share it with you!

The finished pork shank is moist and tender, with an intense savory taste. The browning and braising will create a nice char on the skin and remove most of its fat, so it won’t taste greasy at all.

Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans - an easy one-dish meal that requires very little active cooking time and ensures the best flavor. | omnivorescookbook.com

Why you should add chicken into braised pork

There is a new thing I tried when cooking this dish that I really like. I added a few chicken thighs and some black beans in the middle of braising – a super convenient way to get some extra cooking done. The pork broth infuses a great flavor into the black beans and chicken. And the starch from the beans thickens the sauce to create a velvety texture.

You can serve this chicken with rice or noodles, add it into a salad or stir fry, or use it to create pulled chicken sandwiches and tacos.

Pulled Chicken Tacos - Adding some chicken thigh into braised pork, you can create this rich, moist and tender pulled chicken effortless! | omnivorescookbook.com

The same week I cooked this dish, I used the leftover chicken thigh to create some super delicious pulled chicken tacos for lunch. It’s extremely easy to prepare and only took me 15 minutes to get 6 tacos done. I included the recipe below, but please feel free to tweak the ingredients the way you prefer. I basically used this to clean up things in the fridge.

1505_Wonton-Nachos_004By the way, I have another bonus dish for you to use this chicken – Wonton Nachos with Pulled Chicken and Mango Salsa! It is a fun way of using wonton wrappers to create a colorful and healthy festival feast.

A few extra options when using this recipe:

  • You could skip the beans and chicken. If you’re using a wok, the ingredients in this recipe will be enough to cook 4 pounds of pork shanks (2 big pieces or 4 if cut them into hocks).
  • You could add one more can of black beans to the recipe. In this case, you can create a one-dish meal with the beans and meat, without having to cook rice.
  • You could skip the beans and add cubed potatoes to create a one-dish meal, as well.

Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans - an easy one-dish meal that requires very little active cooking time and ensures the best flavor. | omnivorescookbook.com

If you cook this recipe, don’t forget to take a picture and post it on my Facebook fan page. I love seeing your photos!

5.0 from 4 reviews
Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Thai, Chinese
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 1 pork shank or 2 pork hocks (about 2 pounds in total)
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil (or vegetable oil)
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seed
  • 1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 2 green onions (white part only)
  • 1 thumb ginger, sliced
  • 1 cinnamon stick (about 2 inches in length)
  • 2 whole star anise
  • 1/4 teaspoon five-spice powder
  • 3 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Golden Mountain Sauce (or light soy sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons palm sugar (or white sugar)
  • (optional) 4 skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 can (15 ounces / 400 grams) black beans (do not drain)
Instructions
  1. Dry pork shank thoroughly with paper towel to remove moisture (to avoid oil splatter during frying).
    Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a wok or a large dutch oven over medium high heat until warm. Add pork shank and let it roast for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip and cook the other side for another 2 to 3 minutes. Keep flipping and cooking, until the the entire surface is golden brown. Add 6 cups water (or more) to cover the pork shank.
    Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com
  3. Add Sichuan peppercorns and coriander seeds to a mesh tea strainer or infuser. (See footnote 1)
  4. Add the tea strainer, garlic, green onion, ginger, cinnamon stick, star anise, and five-spice powder to the pot. Mix well.
  5. Continue cooking to bring to a boil. Skim the foam from the surface until the broth is clear.
  6. Cover and turn to low heat. Simmer for 40 minutes. The broth should continue boiling throughout the process.
    Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com
  7. Add light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, Golden Mountain Sauce and palm sugar. Mix well.
    Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com
  8. Cover and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Keep covered and simmer for 1 hour.
  9. (Optional) Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a skillet over medium high heat until warm. Spread chicken thighs. Allow to cook without moving for 2 to 3 minutes, until the bottom side turns golden. Flip and cook the other side until golden. Transfer to the pot with the braising pork shank.
    Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com
  10. Add the black beans, along with all the liquid, into the pot with the pork. (See footnote 2)
  11. Cover and turn bring to a boil over medium high heat. Keep covered and simmer for 1 hour, until the pork turns tender. If the broth runs low before the pork becomes tender, add warm water to cover pork.
    Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com
  12. If the broth is still thin, turn to medium high heat and cook uncovered until the sauce thickens. The starch from the black beans will help the sauce thicken, so there should be quite a lot of sauce (about half) left when it’s finished cooking.
    Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Cooking Process | omnivorescookbook.com
  13. Serve the meat, beans, and sauce over steamed rice.
  14. Store the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to 2 months.
  15. If you have leftover sauce, do not throw them away! Add them to a bowl of noodles, so you can create a rich and hearty noodle soup effortless (see recipe here).
    Tomato Noodle Soup - The Ultimate Comfort Food | omnivorescookbook.com
Notes
1. If you don’t have a mesh tea strainer, you could add the spices into the wok, then scoop them out after 2 hours of braising, while the broth is still thin and the spices are floating on top.
2. You can add more beans as long as the wok (or pot, as the case may be) can hold them. You can serve the beans with the pork as a main dish without rice.

5.0 from 4 reviews
Pulled Chicken Tacos
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Mexican
Cuisine: Main
Serves: 6 tacos
Ingredients
  • 2 braised chicken thigh with black beans (generated from the braised pork recipe above)
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 1/2 can chipotle pepper with adobe sauce
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/8 red onion, minced
  • 1/2 can pickled jalapeño
  • 1/4 cup crumbled cheese
Instructions
  1. Reheat chicken and black beans in the microwave until warm. Shred them with a fork.
  2. Heat corn tortillas in a skillet on stove top until warm.
  3. Chop and mix some canned chipotle peppers with Greek yogurt.
  4. Chop cilantro and red onion.
  5. Add shredded chicken and beans, yogurt sauce, red onion, cilantro, pickled jalapeño and crumbled cheese on 2 tortillas to make tacos.
  6. Serve immediately.

The nutrition facts on the left are calculated based on 1 of the 6 servings generated by the braised pork recipe. The nutrition facts on the right are calculated based on 1 of the 6 tacos generated by the pulled chicken tacos recipe.

Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans Nutrition Facts | omnivorescookbook.comPulled Chicken Tacos Nutrition Facts | omnivorescookbook.com

Serve the braised pork with:

Four-Ingredient Okra Stir-fry

Four-Ingredient Okra Stir-fry | omnivorescookbook.com

Thai Brussels Sprouts Salad

Thai Brussels Sprouts Salad - A wonderful vegan side dish that is burst with flavor, full of nutritions, and can be finished within 30 minutes | omnivorescookbook.com

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Meet Maggie

Hi I'm Maggie Zhu! Welcome to my site about modern Chinese cooking - including street food, family recipes, and restaurant dishes. I take a less labor-intensive approach while maintaining the taste and look of the dish. I am originally from Beijing, and now cook from my Austin, Texas kitchen.

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11 thoughts on “Braised Pork Shank with Black Beans

  1. Whitney

    Popping over to say thank you for teaching Nagi the hidden pinterest picture code!! I had been looking all over and couldn’t find anything until one day I found her website through a Facebook group! BTW – this braised pork looks absolutely fab!

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hey Whitney, no problem with the hidden Pinterest picture code! I was hunting it for a while and I was so glad when I found it!
      Thanks for leaving such a nice comment! 🙂

      Reply
  2. Jaga JS Segaran

    After reading this recipes and the dish that can be used for many ways, I am definitely going to cook soon. I was from Malaysia and Singapore long time back and in Canada, I had been always trying different types of Chinese dishes. Your pork dish appears to have the common ingredients in my pantry and it is like one pot dish dish.

    Thank you and I will let you know when I try.

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Jaga, I’m glad to hear you’re going to try out this recipe! Yes, this recipe uses very basic ingredients, and I believe you will have them in the pantry already, if you usually cook Asian dishes. And yes, it is a one pot dish.
      Hope the dish turns out great and let me know how’s the cooking goes! Have a nice week ahead 🙂

      Reply
  3. Helen @ Scrummy Lane

    I always love anything with black beans in it, Maggie. And what a great idea to cook some chicken thighs along with this .. .and then shred them for a taco! Love this idea! Hope you’re having a good weekend!

    Reply
  4. Kathleen | HapaNom

    Love the idea to add chicken thighs while braising – way to bump up the flavor! These pork shanks look absolutely incredible, like fall off the bone goodness! And making tacos with the leftovers…. you’re making me drool, Maggie!

    Reply
  5. Stefanie

    This recipe sounds very similar to what my dad makes all the time. He learned the dish from his parents, but used a different bean (he gets them frozen in the Asian supermarket) which is kadyos in Filipino or pigeon peas and of course different ingredients. The dish is called KBL (kadyos, baboy at langka) or pigeon peas, pork and jackfruit. The title says what the main ingredients are! Hahah.
    Anyway I would try this dish. Definitely pinned. I’ll mention to my father this variation as well.

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Stefanie, when I searched the KBL recipe, the dish looks absolutely amazing! When we cook this dish in China, we always use soy beans. But here in the US, since black beans are more common and I like their flavor, I used them instead. This recipe originally does not contain any beans. It’s an authentic Thai recipe. But I believe many beans will work well in it.
      Happy cooking and let me know the dish turns out 🙂

      Reply