Cantonese Pork Knuckles With Ginger And Vinegar

June 7, 2022


For whatever reason, Cantonese pork knuckles with ginger and vinegar may not be the most well-known dish among children these days.

As recently as a generation ago, new mothers were required to eat this dish after giving birth. After numerous requests, we’ve finally posted a post on how to make this classic meal here on our blog.

The Dish

With a name like that, you know exactly what you’re getting in this dish. It’s made with pork knuckles, ginger, and rice vinegar, among other things. Hard-boiled eggs are a common addition.

Each item in this recipe is called for in a significant amount in this dish. Two bottles of vinegar and a staggering one pound of ginger are required for this recipe.

The meal has a strong flavor that isn’t for everyone’s taste. It’s almost like it’s more medication than food, even though my mother-in-law made it occasionally simply for fun!

While this dish was boiling, Bill recalls the powerful aroma that filled the house. We smelled and tasted everything as we were creating this recipe. Do his memories of his mother, who was Cantonese, match?

Why Do Cantonese Women Rely on This as a Postpartum Staple?

Qi is said to be improved, blood is warmed, and cold and dampness are expelled in traditional Chinese medicine. Many people feel it hastens the healing process after childbirth and replenishes the body’s energy and stamina.

Because of the dish’s high collagen content and ginger’s circulatory-improving properties (hello, pink cheeks! ), it’s a favorite among some Cantonese ladies.

The vinegar breaks down the calcium in pork bones, according to Wikipedia (there seems to be an entry for everything). One of the dish’s key nutritional advantages is its high calcium content, which can help replenish calcium levels in women’s bodies during pregnancy and lactation.

Additionally, ginger contains Vitamin C, which can aid in the body’s ability to fight off disease. Protein, such as that found in eggs, can aid in muscle healing.

It’s recommended to serve this to a new mother a few days after delivery. It’s fine to have just one little bowl a day, and the recipe should last you a week. You should wait until a normal appetite returns before treating more complicated cases. Before creating this recipe, be sure to speak with your doctor about dietary restrictions!


  • 1kg of 1 pig trotter with shin
  • 450g ginger
  • 6 hard boiled eggs
  • 5 cups of Chinese sweet vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of Shaoxing wine
  • 1/2 cup Chinese black vinegar
  • salt


  1. Scrape the ginger’s skin off using the back of a paring knife or spoon, making sure to keep the ginger in large chunks. Rinse and dry them well after peeling. A hefty object, such as a knife, can be used to smash each chunk.
  2. Cook the ginger for ten minutes in a dry, clean wok over medium heat. Make sure you don’t overheat it. Trim away any burnt ginger from the dish to avoid a bitter final product.
  3. Add the ginger chunks and the vinegar to a large non-reactive cooking pot. Bring to a boil, covered. Upon reaching a rolling boil, reduce the heat to medium-low. 90 minutes on low heat. You can now taste the vinegar mixture and adjust the tartness if necessary by adding more black vinegar.
  4. The meat can be added to the vinegar and ginger as they cook. Pour 2 tablespoons of Shaoxing wine into the container and fill it with cold water. Cook for an additional 3 minutes after the water has reached a boil. Drain the pork, then rinse it under running water. Set away for a later time.
  5. Stir in the pork after the vinegar and ginger have simmered for 90 minutes. Before incorporating the pork, re-heat the vinegar-ginger base (if you’ve made it ahead of time).
  6. Over medium-low heat, cover and simmer for another 60 to 90 minutes, stirring occasionally. When you can easily poke a chopstick through the pig skin, it’s done.
  7. Boil the eggs while the pork trotters and knuckles cook. Serious Eats introduced us to this tried-and-true method. In a big pot, bring 3 quarts of water to a boil. Boil the eggs for 30 seconds after lowering them into the pot of hot water. Simmer for 11 minutes with the lid on and the heat down to low. Add ice cubes to the ice cube tray. Using a thin stream of running water, peel the eggs as soon as they’re cold enough to handle.
  8. Add peeled and chopped eggs to the simmering pot once the pig trotters have reached an ideal doneness. Allow it to cool by turning off the heat. Salt to taste and serve hot the next day.
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