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Sweet and sour pork cheeks with carrots and parsnips

Joues De Porc Aigres Douces Aux Carottes Et Aux Panais

A comforting, Quebec-inspired dish, perfect for frigid temperatures! Pork cheeks are an underestimated, economic option that are tasty and tender when braised. Use large, firm carrots that will be perfectly cooked, once the meat becomes tender. A vegetable purée, pasta or even polenta would be great accompaniments. In a pinch, pork cheeks can easily be replaced by using pork loin.


  • 1 kg pork cheeks
  • Salt, to taste
  • 3 Tbsp Quebec mixed spices, ground
  • ½ cup flour, to coat the meat
  • 6 Tbsp lard OR olive oil and butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 celery branch, chopped
  • 2 lb large carrots
  • 1 lb parsnips
  • 1 cup white wine
  • ¼ cup honey OR ½ cup maple syrup
  • 3 Tbsp good vinegar, of your choice


  1. 1

    Dry pork cheeks using a paper towel. Season with salt and ground spices. Flour.

  2. 2

    Heat a casserole on medium. Add lard and sear the meat on both sides.

  3. 3

    Once the meat is golden, add chopped onions and celery. Mix and let brown for a few minutes.

  4. 4

    Clean the carrots and parsnips. Cut the carrots into large pieces. Place vegetables in the casserole and mix well.

  5. 5

    Pour the wine, honey and vinegar. Cover barely with water. Bring to a boil.

    Cover and let simmer for 1 ½ hours until the pork is tender. Alternatively, cook in a 375° oven.

  6. 6

    If needed, add boiling water if too dry.

  7. 7

    Taste and adjust the sauce for salt, sweetness or acidity, in an effort to obtain a delicious balance of sweet and sour, allow to simmer slowly for a few more minutes. Let rest for 15 to 20 minutes before serving.