Nyonya Cuisine – Part 4
I hope the title won't put you off straight away. I know not many people dare to consume animal offal. I shy away from most of the organ parts such as liver, intestines too. But for pig maw (pig stomach) it can be really nutritious especially for Chinese women after giving birth. During month long of confinement period, pig stomach soup a.k.a. "Too Thor Th'ng" in Hokkien is one of their main dishes to consume. As the Chinese believes eating different parts of animal will benefit the corresponding parts of our body (以形朴形). Hence, eating pig's stomach is supposed to 'replenish' the stomach of women who have just given birth. This pig maw soup is another Penang Nyonya delicacy. This soup is also one of the signature soups served during Chinese New Year.
Initially, I thought only Chinese eats pig stomach. In fact Chinese eats nearly every part of a pig! But after some Google searches, I was surprised to find out that pig maw (a.k.a. Hog maw) is also served in Western cuisine especially in Italian, Scottish and Pennsylvanian Dutch. Other than pig maw, the next most important ingredient of this soup is cracked peppercorns of white peppers; hence some call this soup peppered pig stomach soup. With the pepper in the soup it brings out the heat thus perfect to warm up your body to counter the cold weather. The Northern Hemisphere is currently in the winter months so it can be a great timing for the "Northern Hemisphereans" to try this out.
|Too Thor Th'ng (Pig Maw Soup) 猪肚汤 Featured in Group Recipes 7/12/2010|
Below is my highly experienced cook- Chef Ah Lan demonstrating the correct way to wash the pig maw. I must warn you first, it may look gross to some of you. Don't watch it immediately after your meal J
Serving for 4-5
1 pig stomach
1 -2 pieces of pork rumps
A handful of white pepper, cracked (depending on the spiciness to your liking)
salt to taste
PIG MAW CLEANING METHOD:
Turn the pig’s maw inside out (like you do with your shirts) and clean the pig stomach by washing it with salt and tapioca flour (cassava root starch). For better result rub the stomach with banana leaf or assam (tamarind) paste which can easily get rid of the slimy and sticky feeling of the stomach. Repeat this process a few times to get rid of the fats (white stuff) and other impurities on the lining. Rinse with running water. Turn the stomach back and repeat the washing steps on the outside. When to stop cleaning? Test it by smelling it! It sounds a bit gross but it’s an effective way to tell whether the stomach is still smelly.
1. Pour boiling water over the cleaned pig stomach (inner lining) and use knife to get rid of yellow inner membrane around the stomach and trim off any fats attached on the lining.
2. Turn the inner lining stomach back and stuff the whole pork rumps into the pig stomach thru the small opening, put half the quantity of the cracked peppers in too.
3. Simmer the stomach using slow cooker (crock pot) or over stove using low heat, it takes at least one and a half hours.
4. You can add in the optional ingredients mushroom, gingko at the last 30 minutes.
5. To test if the pig’s stomach is ready, use a fork to poke in the center, if fork go in easily, then it is ready else continue to simmer.
6. Add in seasoning and final taste test.
7. When ready, remove the pork rumps and slice the pig’s maw into stripes and serve with soup.