Passion for Pork

Biera’s Berkshire Pork Croquettes with Rhubarb Apple Butter & Pickled Rhubarb

Sharman - Thursday, September 12, 2019

When it comes to the carefully selected ingredients she melds together on the plates at her contemporary restaurant in the Richie neighbourhood of Edmonton, Chef Christine Sanford of Biera is passionate and particular about the Alberta pork she serves. Chef Sanford is eager to introduce her customers to Broek Pork Acres’ pasture-raised Berkrshire, a pure breed known to produce tender, dark, juicy meat with high fat marbling.

Having visited the Broek Pork Acres farm in Lethbridge County, Chef Sanford is confident in the pork dishes at Biera because she has seen firsthand the dedication and care Allan and Joanne Vanden Broek put into raising their beautiful Berkshire pigs. She easily describes it as some of the best pork she has ever had; patrons who’ve tried the Broek Acres Berkshire pork dish from Biera‘s charcoal grill are sure to agree.

Chef Sanford graciously shared a versatile recipe for pork rillette, a spreadable combination of pork and fat reminiscent of pate, that can be served soft on toast (and a great accompaniment to any charcuterie plate), or breaded into crispy croquettes and accented with a beautify rhubarb apple butter & pickled rhubarb.



Makes about 20 pieces

60-70% meaty Berkshire pork (Cut meaty pork into medium sized pieces)
30-40% Pork Fat (Cut fat into smaller pieces)
2 large garlic cloves smashed (this is enough for around 2kg meat)
1 bay leaf
1 sprigs thyme
Apx 1/4 bottle Normandy Style Farmers Cider or something similar to Cuvee de Ranke


1. Weigh out the pork and pork fat and calculate 2% Kosher Salt and set aside (so for 2kg of meat and fat total, you would add 40g kosher salt.)

2. In a brazier or large pot render the fat on med-low until most of it is liquid.

3. Remove fat from pot and brown the meat. Add the Garlic, add your 2% salt. Cook a few more minutes until golden.

4. Deglaze with the cider/beer and add the rendered fat back in. Add the bay and thyme. Stir and cover on LOW, stirring every 10 minutes.

5. Cook until tender, then remove the lid and continue to cook until the liquid has reduced and coated the meat. Let rest 20 minutes, then strain off the fat, blend the meat gently in a food possessor to make a chunky paste- you can add a bit of the fat back in if it seems dry.

(Note: You can keep any extra pork fat for another dish!)

To prep the croquettes:

1. Flatten rillette onto a tray lined with parchment and let cool over night (this helps to firm it up so it’s easier to bread)

2. The next day cut into rectangle squares and bread (breading directions below)



1 cup all-purpose flour
Egg wash (2 eggs beaten with 1/4 cup of milk)
2 cups panko breadcrumbs


1. Set up the breading station. Place the flour in one dish, the egg wash in a shallow bowl, and the panko in a separate dish. Season them all with salt.

2. Dip the rillette portion in the flour, then with your other hand into the egg wash and then using your dry hand back into the panko.

3. Let chill 20 minutes and then you can shallow fry or deep fry the breaded rillettes until golden and heated through.


5lbs Red Rhubarb
2 Apples
250ml Cherry cider or apple cider


1. Chop the rhubarb up and the apples into quarters removing pits.

2. Cook everything in a large pot on low for appx 1-2 hrs or until apples & rhubarb are getting soft and the mixture has thickened up (the liquid will evaporate over time)

3. Blend on high in a blender until very smooth, and season to your taste with salt.



1 lb rhubarb stalks
1/2 cups water
2 cups apple cider vinegar or champagne vinegar
2 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon salt


1. Heat the vinegar, sugar and salt until dissolved.

2. Pour over the rhubarb and let sit overnight, or up to a week.

3. To use slice the rhubarb into desired sizes.

To serve, serve the fried pork rillettes with a dollop of the rhubarb apple butter and top with pickled rhubarb.



Ritchie Market
9570 – 76 Avenue NW
Edmonton, AB T6C 0K2
(587) 525-8589

  • Monday Closed
  • Tuesday 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
  • Wednesday 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
  • Thursday 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
  • Friday 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
  • Saturday 1:00 pm – 11:00 pm
  • Sunday 1:00pm – 5:00 pm