1) Add the butter or lard together with the chopped shallot and garlic to a non-stick pan and place it over medium heat.
2) Lightly fry the shallot and garlic for 3 minutes. Then add the bay leaf, thyme, clove, juniper berries and cardamom pods (optional).
3) Cook for another 2 minutes. Then place the pork cheeks on top of the shallot and herbs. Pour in the beer. The pork cheeks should be fully submerged.
4) Also add the diced gingerbread and half of the mustard. Season with pepper and salt.
5) Turn the heat low and put a lid on the pan. Let the pork cheeks simmer and braised extremely gently for 3 hours. Don’t let them boil, keep it low and slow. Check regularly. In the end the pork cheeks should fall apart easily. when you touch them.
6) Remove the pork cheeks from the stew and bring the remaining braising liquid to a good boil. Add the sauce thickener. Let the sauce reduce until you get a much thicker consistency. Turn off the heat.
7) Check the seasoning and add extra pepper, salt or mustard to taste if necessary.
8) Add the pork cheeks back to the pan. Drizzle with the sauce. Let them sit there for another 5 minutes. Then scoop the cheeks and sauce onto plates and serve hot.