This version of feijoada is a riff off Portuguese feijoada -- made with white beans, not the Brazilian version, which is basically the same only it uses black beans. Keys to this recipe are good beans and variety in the pork bits. The more various, the better. And you need something smoked in there, too. I used smoked hocks and/or smoked linguica sausages. Needless to say this stew keeps well in the fridge, and reheats beautifully. Serve it with rice or a crusty bread.
2poundswhite beans, Canario yellow beans, or kidney beans
1ham hock or smoked turkey leg
2poundspork shoulderor chopped heart, or shanks, cut into large chunks
2large carrots,sliced into rounds
1headgarlic,peeled but otherwise whole
1tablespoonhot sauce or chile paste
1tablespoonground coriander seed
Black pepper and chopped parsley to garnish
2quartspork broth or water
Soak beans for at least 8 hours. If you don't have 8 hours, soak repeatedly in the hottest water you can get from the tap, replacing it when it cools. This second method should take about 3 hours.
In a large pot or Dutch oven, gently brown the pork shoulder in a tablespoon or two of olive oil. Do this in batches and don't crowd the pot. While you are doing this, preheat oven to 300°F. Hack at the trotter with a cleaver or heavy chefs knife to open it up in many places -- this is to let the collagen and fat infuse into the stew.
When the pork shoulder has browned, remove it for the moment and add the onions. Cook until translucent. Add back the browned pork shoulder, the trotter, ham hock, coriander, bay leaves and a healthy sprinkling of salt, then add the beans and mix it all together.
Cover by 1 inch with pork broth or water. Ideally you are making this as an adjunct to making stock, such as when you have large pieces of a hog, like, say, a head. The feijoada will be better with pork broth, but don't despair if you don't have any. Use water or vegetable broth. Do not substitute beef or chicken broth. Bring to a simmer and cover. Put in the oven for 90 minutes.
Remove from oven and test the beans. If they are getting sorta tender, you're good. If they are still rocks, return to the oven for another 20 minutes. If the beans are getting tender, add the carrots, garlic cloves, chile paste and tomatoes. Cover and return to the oven for 30 minutes.
Check to see how the carrots are doing. The beans should be tender by now. Once the carrots are soft but not falling apart, add the sausage. Pull out the shanks and trotter if you are using them and pull off all the meat and fat, etc. Chop as coarsely as you like and put back in the stew. Return to the oven for 10 minutes.
Remove and, still covered, leave the pot on top of the stove for up to 20 minutes, although you can serve immediately. Slice the sausages into disks before you serve. Ladle into bowls, garnish with chopped parsley and black pepper, and serve with crusty bread and a lusty Portuguese wine, such as Touriga Nacional.