Buzhenina

Buzhenina is popular Russian appetizer that can be compared to a ham (as it is meat that is eaten cold). It’s a great dish, because you almost don’t need to do anything and the result is a big mouthwateringly delicious piece of baked meat.

The trick is in choosing the right piece of pork – it should be a single boneless piece of pigs leg with marble pattern (like marble beef). Also there should be at least 1 cm fat coating ~33% of piece. The piece itself shouldn’t be flat. Such pork pieces are not that easy to find, so usually if I see a piece of marble pork in store, I buy it (even if I had no intentions to cook buzhenina).

Ingredients:

  • 800 g piece of pork (all criteria see in previous paragraph)
  • 1,25 tsp of salt
  • 3 cloves of garlic (15-20 g)
  • 0,5 tsp of freshly grounded pepper

Equipment:

  • Foil or oven bag

Instructions

1. While your oven is preheating to 180°C, rub pork with salt and pepper. Big cloves of garlic cut in long pieces. Make little pockets in pork and hide garlic pieces inside of them.

2. Wrap the meat with foil.

3. Bake 1,5 hours and let buzhenina cool down. Besides meat juice there can be some fat (with consistence of soft butter). This fat is great for toasts or for adding some flavour to a dish. So I would advise you to gather it and store in a fridge (not more than 1 week).

Meat juice I’m using for cooking soup instead of meat, f.e. you can choose this recipe of soup. Remember to reduce amount of salt and pepper as buzhenina juice already contains some.

This piece of pork wasn’t marble and the fat over it was too thin. That’s why buzhenina is dry, but it is suitable for a diet and tasty.

Sliced buzhenina

Sliced buzhenina close-up

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