I enjoy making and eating souse.
I was introduced to it 20 years ago by a Bajan mother who's children had all flown the coup but she continued to cook for them so she was always wanting us to visit to eat. What a lovely person she was - Sadly no longer with us.
I loved the Souse she made and since I have worked out my own recipe and method.
Makes about 10 servings
You will need:
For the dish
two whole pigs trotters (feet) cleaned
two large cucumbers
4 large limes
one large sweet onion (nice if it's a red one)
a couple of pieces of garlic
two scotch bonnet peppers (I like it HOT!!) (if they're red ones it adds to the colour)
a tablespoonful of black pepper corns
a teaspoon of salt
about 1.5 pints of de-chlorinated water
For the preparation
half a dozen bay leaves
a teaspoon of coriander seeds
Using a large pan or preferably a pressure cooker cover the trotters in water and bring to the boil and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
Drain off all the water and replace with fresh cold water to cover the trotters along with the bay leaves half the black pepper corns and the coriander seeds.
Bring to the boil and pressure cook at a low pressure for 50 mins.
Pigs feet tend to smell a little strange when being boiled but I have found the addition of bay, black pepper and coriander seed improves the aroma greatly.
While the trotters are cooking add to a large glass bowl the onion very finely sliced, sliced is better than chopped here because it becomes part of the texture of the dish.
Using a pestle and mortar grind the salt, the remaining pepper corns, the garlic and the scotch bonnet peppers together until a fine paste. Add this paste to the sliced onion in the bowl.
Extract all the juice from the 4 limes and add it to the bowl.
Chop one of the cucumbers keeping all the juice and add to the mix in the bowl
Now comes a messy (but enjoyable) part, using gloved hands (because of the chillies) squeeze together the mixture as tight as you can. This has the effect of pickling the onions with the lime juice so removing the strong raw onion flavour, and releases all the cucumber juice which is a major factor in the overall flavour of this dish. If you don’t do this part your dish will not be the same.
Once the trotters have finished cooking rinse under cold water and when cool remove all the bones, chop the meat into small pieces and add to the bowl.
finely slice the second cucumber and add the slices to the mix.
Cover the entire mixture with cold bottled water (or water that has been de-chlorinated) stir well and refrigerate for at least 12 hours.
I like to serve it as a starter but of course just enjoy!