A favourite all over Germany, these pork knuckles (otherwise known as hocks) are the perfect mix of crunchy crackling and tender meat – and they’re so easy to cook. Here they’re infused with garlic and caraway and served with delicious potato dumplings and slow-cooked red cabbage. For a really deluxe meal, add some fried onion rings and apple sauce. A perfect recipe to prepare on lazy winter days.






Skill level

Average: 3.6 (191 votes)


Potato dumplings

  • 500 g potatoes
  • 100 g (⅔ cup) plain flour
  • 1 egg 
  • 1 bunch chives, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • freshly grated nutmeg 

Red cabbage

  • 2 red cabbages, finely sliced
  • 2 apples, peeled, cored and finely sliced
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 2 juniper berries
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • 250 ml (1 cup) red wine, plus a splash extra
  • 2 bacon rashers, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp butter

Pork knuckle

  • 1 kg (2 pieces) pork hocks
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • finely chopped garlic
  • olive oil
  • caraway seeds

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


You will need to begin this recipe 1 day ahead.

The day before, start the dumplings and cabbage. For the dumplings, boil the potatoes in their skins until soft. Leave to cool. For the red cabbage, combine the cabbage, apple, half the onion, the spices, bay leaves, sugar, salt, pepper and wine and leave to marinate overnight.

The next day, preheat the oven to 180°C. Rub the skin of the pork hocks with generous amounts of salt, garlic and oil. Sprinkle with the caraway seeds. Place in a baking dish with 2 cm of water and roast for 2 hours.

Meanwhile, to cook the red cabbage, fry the remaining onion and bacon in the butter. Add a splash of red wine, then add the marinated cabbage mixture. Cover and braise for 20 minutes over low heat until soft. Season to taste.

To make the potato dumplings, peel the cooked potatoes and mash them. Incorporate with the flour, egg, chives, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Roll into a long sausage and cut into pieces about the size of golf balls. Roll into balls.

Cook the dumplings in salted boiling water until they float (around 2 minutes) then drain.

Arrange the roast pork with the dumplings and red cabbage on a serving plate and carve at the table.