Instant Pot Pata Tim is a quicker way to cook this succulent pork hock dish. Pata Tim is a Filipino/Chinese braised pork hock or pig’s trotters, marinated, then slow-cooked in sugar, spices and broth until very tender and served with pechay and mushroom. Using a pressure cooker will shortened cooking time tremendously than stove top or a slow cooker.
This dish was derived from the Chinese red braised pork and slightly modified by Filipinos. While cooking this dish, my kitchen smelled like a Chinese restaurant. It uses star anise which is highly fragrant that gives this dish its distinct aroma. I highly suggest to use star anise and Shaoxing rice wine for a more authentic Pata Tim similar to what you would normally order from a Chinese restaurant.
Pata tim is serve with vegetables, white rice and in my case, some fish sauce on the side. When properly cooked, it is very tender that melts in your mouth flavored with a sweet and salty creamy brown sauce.
My mom got this Pata Tim recipe from a close Chinese friend who owns a catering business. They met each other at a Christmas party where my Dad worked. Since then, they became good friends as they both share the same interest and one is cooking. They frequented a Chinese restaurant in Greenhills and for some reason they were able to convinced the cook to show up at my mom’s friend business and show them how to make pata hamon, another pata dish that we love. One of these days, I will share the recipe but it takes a while to debone the pork hock. I can’t believe they were able to get the recipe.
Anyway, making Pata Tim is way easier that pata hamon and shares some similar ingredients.
How to Make Instant Pot Pata Tim
1. For a flavorful Pata Tim, marinate pork hock for at least a day or two. In a small bowl,combine soysauce, minced garlic, chopped garlic onions, freshly ground pepper, white sugar, ginger and garlic powder.
2. Place washed and cleaned pork leg or hock in a zip lock or plastic bag then pour marinate. Refrigerate for a day or two. Once in a while, flip plastic bag so both sides of meat gets penetrated evenly with the marinade.
3. Prepare sauce for pata tim. It can be done on the same day as the marinate, since you’ll be using similar ingredients. Cover it with saran wrap and refrigerate or you can mix it up on the cooking day.
4. After marinating meat for at least a day, prepare your instant pot. Select the SAUTE program, set temperature level to low and time to 30 minutes.
5. Remove meat from marinate. You can discard the marinate or strain the solids and discard the liquid. Set aside solids (chopped garlic onion, ginger and garlic).
6. Add cooking oil and saute remaining ginger until light brown. Add solids from marinade (optional) and continue cooking for a minute.
7. Sear both sides of pata tim for 5 minutes each side. Note: Some areas of pata skin will stick to pot, when ready to flip pata to the other side, use 2 kitchen utensils to detach skin from pot.
8. Pour pork or chicken broth. You can use water but I prefer using broth. It adds more flavor to pata tim.
9. Pour pata tim sauce.
10. Simmer meat for 1 hour. Saute program maximum time is 30 minutes. Once program is done, set it again for 30 minutes. You can cover using a regular lid but not the Instant Pot lid.
11. After SAUTE program is done (60 minutes), set PRESSURE COOK, to HIGH PRESSURE for 60 minutes. Note this setting is for a 2 pounds pork hock.
12. When PRESSURE COOK program is done. Set aside pata on a serving platter.
13. Strain sauce, pressing solids to extract all the delicious sauce. Put back liquid in instant pot and don’t discard solids.
14. In a small container, place solids and add 1/3 cup water. Mix then strain liquid and discard solids.
15. Use this liquid to dissolve cornstarch to thicken sauce. As you can see, when I cook nothing goes to waste. All the delicious flavor are on these solids, you might as well use it.
16. Set Instant Pot to SAUTE, low for 30 minutes to make sauce. It takes 10 to 15 minutes to make it and you can cancel SAUTE program when done. I prefer to set a higher time in case it takes me longer to cook then I cancel the program when done.
17. When sauce is boiling, cook vegetables for a few minutes, remove and add to the serving platter. You can blanch the vegetables in boiling water, if you prefer that. Pechay and bok choy are commonly used with this dish but I only had Napa when I made it.
18. Add mushroom. Cook for a minute or two. Remove and add to the platter. Normally, dried shitake mushroom is used but the only thing I have is canned mushroom.
19. Pour cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly until sauce has thickened. Season with salt, if needed.
20. CANCEL program.
21. Pour sauce over cooked pata.
Quicker Way to Cook Pata Tim
1. Skip the marinate but I highly suggest to marinate for a more flavorful succulent meat.
2. Skip the 1 hour braising of meat.I prefer to simmer hock for 1 hour so sauce can penetrate the meat then use the PRESSURE COOK program.
Try this other Delicious Pork Hock recipe, Crispy Pata.
As always, my Instant Pot instructions are very detailed. I am assuming people checking this post just acquired their instant pot. Also, please read the manual to familiarize yourself with all the features and for your safety. My instant pot cooking instructions does not replace the manual.
- 2 pounds pig’s leg or pork hock washed and cleaned
- 5 tablespoons soy sauce
- 5 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons green onion chopped
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 1 tablespoon ginger minced
- 1 thumb ginger minced
- 5 cups broth or water (pork or chicken broth)
- ¼ cup vinegar
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons Shaoxing rice wine
- 4 star anise
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 can mushroom
- bundle of bok choy pechay or Napa
- ¼ cup cornstarch (dissolved in 1/4 cup water for thickening)
- ¼ cup oil
- In a small bowl, make marinate. Combine and mix soy sauce, garlic, green onion, ground pepper, white sugar, ginger and garlic powder.
- In a zip lock or plastic bag, place pork hock and pour marinate. Set aside in fridge for at least a day or two.
- After marinating pork hock, make brown sauce. Combine vinegar, garlic, soy sauce and Shaoxing rice wine. Set aside.
- Set instant pot SAUTE program, to low for 30 minutes. Once display shows HOT, heat oil, then saute ginger until golden. Note: Place the condensation collector behind the cooker before you start cooking.
- Remove pork hock from marinate. You could strain the marinate, discard the liquid and saute the solids (garlic, ginger and green onions) for 1 minute.
- Sear pork hock on both sides for about 5 minutes each side. Note: Some areas of pork hock skin will stick in instant pot, use 2 kitchen utensils to flip to the other side.
- Pour broth or water.
- Pour brown sauce and add star anise and bay leaves.
- Simmer for 60 minutes. SAUTE program maximum time set is 30 minutes. When program ends, display will show L000, press CANCEL. Set it again for 30 minutes.
- Once SAUTE program is done and display shows L000, press CANCEL.
Note if you are familiar with your instant pot, you can skip to #19.
- Place and close lid and turn the steam release handle to "SEALING".
- Press “PRESSURE COOK”. Set to HIGH PRESSURE and set time to 60 minutes.
- After a few minutes, the FLOAT VALVE will pop-up, an indication that the instant pot is pressurize and the countdown begins.
- Once cooking time is done, "PRESSURE COOK" program will no longer be lit. The display will show the elasped time. Example: L000
- Press "CANCEL".
- Wait when the FLOAT VALVE goes down before opening the lid. This is called Natural Pressure Release. Note: You can also do a quick pressure release but be very careful when doing this. Refer to the manual for detailed instructions.
- Turn the steam release handle to "VENTING".
- Open lid. Tilt pot lid so all water droplets fall inside the pot.
- Use a fork and poke pork hock to check if already tender. If not, repeat the ‘PRESSURE COOK” program and estimate the time.
- Transfer cooked pork hock into a serving platter.
- Strain sauce in a sieve. Press solids to extract all the sauce.
- Return the sauce in the instant pot.
- Set the SAUTE program to 30 minutes.
- Bring sauce to a boil. While waiting, dissolve cornstarch in water or before discarding the solids from sauce add water to it, strain and use that to dissolve cornstarch. It’s your call.
- Once sauce is boiling, place vegetables. Remove Napa and place in the platter. Leave the carrots with the sauce.
- Add the mushroom and cook for 2 minutes, then transfer to the serving platter.
- Pour cornstarch mixture to thicken sauce. While pouring cornstarch, stir constantly until well blended.
- CANCEL SAUTE program.
- Pour enough sauce over pork hock. Place excess sauce in a bowl and serve it on the side.
- Serve with white rice. Enjoy!