Here is a perfect slice of hog head cheese, don’t let the name scare you off from taking a bite.
3 pounds pork neck bone, 5 pig feet, 7 pig ears, 2 envelopes onion soup mix, 3 cups diced yellow onions, 1 cups diced celery, 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper, 1/2 cup diced flat-leaf parsley, 2 teaspoons dried thyme, 3 tablespoons dried sage, 1 tablespoon pickling spice, 2 tablespoons dill pickle relish, 2 whole cloves, 6 garlic cloves, 4 green onions, 1 1/4 cup grated carrots, 1/4 cup whole peppercorns, 1/8 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/2 cup white vinegar, 1/8 cup Louisiana hot sauce, 1 teaspoon dried basil, 1 teaspoon allspice, 3 tablespoon seasoning salt, 4 bay leaves, 1 tablespoons red pepper flakes, 1 tablespoon black pepper, 4 cups chicken stock, 4 cups water.
The liquid should cover the meat by 3-4 inches. Bring to boil, turn down the heat to a simmer and cook until your meat is tender and falling off the bone. Periodically skim off the grease and scum that comes to the top of the pot. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP. Take the meat out of the pot. Allow the meat to cool. With your hands, remove the meat from the bones. Chop into bite-size pieces. Discard about a third of the fat. Thinly, very thinly slice the ears, then cut them into 1/2 inch bite-size pieces. Strain the stock. Return the stock to the stove and turn the heat to a simmer. Measure the meat and measure the stock, the portion should be 2 parts meat to 1 part stock. The consistency should like a thick stew or a pot of grits. Mix together and taste. Your cheese should be over seasoned, not salty, but overseasoned. Cold food always needs more seasoning than hot food. Pour into a 9 x 13 pan. Refrigerate until firm; this process takes about 3 1/2 – 4 hours.
BABBBBBy, it’s time to eat! The perfect southern Louisiana platter would be smoked oysters, slices of head cheese, crispy fried boudin balls, hot sauce, mustard, horseradish, boiled eggs, dill pickles, toasted sourdough bread, and crackers.