Trotter and Ham Hock Terrine.

Yes I know, we just had ham hock. Problem is, I tend to get a little obsessed with ingredients. This past week or so I have worked my way through three (yes, three) of the fat, porky loins. I went into the butcher with the intention of purchasing four rashers of bacon for my lunch, but I came out with an extra two ham hocks, two trotters and a wedge of black pudding. I think I need to find some sort of piggy addicts rehab.

I googled trotters meets hock and found this recipe, which I made the same day, even though it did leave me standing over a hot pot of pig at 1am on a Friday morning. I cooled it, packed it, weighed it down and fridged it, ready for some weekend feasting.

On Sunday morning, the piggy theme continued as I was roused by the sound of sizzling and the smell of caramelised fat wafting into the bedroom. Being the cynic that I am however, alarm bells started ringing – why is he making surprise breakfast? I don’t remember any nagging – have I been nagging in my sleep? And then he appears, standing sheepishly at the end of the bed, and my sleepy ears prick up at news of an imminent ‘confession’. “I’m really reeeally sorry.” What? “I’m so sorry.” What? “Its the terrine.” WHAT? “Last night, after you went to bed. We were drunk..I…we…didn’t mean to…I didn’t know what I was doing.”

I give him the most annoyed glare I can muster at 8am on a Sunday and finally extract the full story – it turns out those cheeky boys only ate a little slice off the end after all, bless ‘em. I never knew I was so scary. I decide to milk the guilt for a further five minutes to secure a bedside brew, then I let it go and all is forgiven. Although not before I’ve bartered for an extra sausage.

Later on that day, the offical terrine tasting commences. The meat, trotters and some belly have been cooked in a broth flavoured with aromatics (e.g. onion, carrot, celery, bay), then removed to cool, the meat picked, packed and the broth strained and poured over. The trotters provide a natural source of gelatine as the recipe explains, so you just weigh it down in the fridge and it sets.

At first I was a little unnerved by the appearance of the finished terrine. In its full-length form, you would be forgiven for speculating whether it is fit for human consumption. I can allay your fears on this point however, it is more than acceptable, it is delicious and it just gets better with age. Big chunks of meat suspended in ultra-savoury jelly, just begging for a bit of crispy toast and a pickle or two. I wanted picallili but didn’t have time to make any so we settled for a crude arrangement of pickled onions, cornichons, slaw and salad.

And, from one obsession to another. Having finally purged myself of the hock fixation, I am now hankering after a pâté. That’s after I’ve gone veggie for a week. Starting on Monday perhaps. I’ve already pre-ordered pork belly for a meal this evening and I make no apologies whatsoever.

Category: Meat, Pâtés, Terrines and Things of That Ilk. 29 comments »

29 Responses to “Trotter and Ham Hock Terrine.”

  1. Lizzie

    You have no idea how much I laughed at “Although not before I’ve bartered for an extra sausage”. I have a filthy mind.

    I’ve been wanting to make a terrine for ages and ages but have been put off my long lists of ingredients. This has given me the push though.

    Lizzies last blog post..Intermission

  2. Caitlin

    Your terrine looks great, but the best part of the story is how afraid your boyfriend was that he touched your pork! Brilliant!


    Caitlins last blog post..German Dinner In Pictures

  3. Jan

    Hi helen,

    The terrine looks amazing. I’ve recently started a blog – you may find my first post interesting – it invloves trotters and a pigs head!

    ps I love your blog

  4. Jan

    Sorry Helen, the blog is the ample cook

  5. Su-Lin

    I am so craving ham hocks now! That terrine looks amazing.

    Su-Lins last blog post..Rasa Sayang

  6. The Graphic Foodie

    I always, without fail, order hock terrine if I am eating out and it is on the menu. This has inspired me to get in the kitchen and cook it myself! Although woe betide any late revellers taking a slice in the middle of the night (unless that reveller is me!).

    The Graphic Foodies last blog post..New Piccadilly café, gone but not forgotten

  7. Dan

    Wow – its a regular meat-fest in your house. I imagine it looks a little bit like Hannibal Lectors lair, various unidentified pieces of meat hanging from hooks etc.

    The Terrine looks great, how long does something like that keep?

    Dans last blog post..A trip to Brighton….Bills Produce store and The Ginger Pig

  8. Fearless Kitchen

    It’s great that you’re using the lesser-used parts of the pig. At least they’re lesser-used around here!

    Fearless Kitchens last blog post..Recipe: Cucumber and Olive Salad

  9. Merlotti

    mmm – love it! As I mentioned, I also have a fantastic recipe I asked a local chef for, which I think I’ll have to do this weekend. It reminded me of how scrummy it was – delicious with chilli jam too!

  10. Nate

    I *SO* want to make this! It brings back memories of our dinner at Chez Panisse. Thanks for posting it!

  11. siri

    Awesome…ham hocks are big big big in Norway. I love to use them in split pea soup, but this looks like something a little more adventurous that I would actually try.

  12. Christie @ fig&cherry

    Anything to get a morning cuppa, you cheeky girl! I was reading it in with my jaw down thinking ‘no Chris! Please don’t have demolished it all – OR – dropped it on the floor!’.

    I’ve been wanting to make a terrine for a while… I better get to the butcher :P

  13. Winesleuth

    Wow, it’s amazing how much patience you have! I would have long since thrown in the towel and gone down to Waitrose’s deli counter. Bet this would go really well with….. Blue Nun!!! ;-)

    ps. great pix!

    Winesleuths last blog post..Was that….Blue Nun?!?

  14. joey

    Your terrine looks fabulous! I have made country style terrine before but I’ve always wanted to make this kind with the hocks and the jelly! Thanks for sharing the link :)

    joeys last blog post..Fruits of Our Labor

  15. Just Cook It

    Awesome work.

    Just Cook Its last blog post..Homemade Pork Scratchings – Part Two

  16. Bron

    That terrine looks like treasures of the deep – amazing.

    Brons last blog post..Date & Parsnip Salad

  17. Chris Wildman

    Looks superb and am going to have to make this at the weekend, hock & trotter terrine…

    Chris Wildmans last blog post..Pork Belly or is it Belly Pork?

  18. Helen

    Dan – I really don’t know how long the terrine would keep, but I wouldn’t want to eat it after a week I don’t think. The jelly is salty, so it will preserve things a little.

  19. David Hall

    Helen – your recipes just get better!

    No need for RSS and all that, just register on the subs bit of my website to receive newsletters and recipes!

    Dave x

    David Halls last blog post..This Is The End

  20. Helen

    Oh I see. It was just me being a bit thick! I shall get on over there and do it right away. I want me some news David Hall Stylee!

  21. Alex

    That terrine looks sublime – and piccalilli is the first thing that came to my mind to have with it! But I bet it was bloody gorgeous without…

    Also, loving your impulse buying in the butchers! I tend to get impulsitis around shoes but meat buys would be far more satisfying, I think…

    Alexs last blog post..Tartiflette

  22. johanna

    you know, there’s no need to apologise for getting close and personal with an ingredient… the more you cook with it, the more familiar and chummy you become with it and the better it tastes every time. i have a thing for venison casserole at the moment and they just keep getting better and better. stick with it. trust your instincts, live your loves of the moment as passionately as they deserve!
    Terrine looking wonderful although I don’t think I’ll ever attempt MAKING one ;-)

  23. Niamh

    I am the same! When I find something I like, I do it to death and then can never eat it again. This sounds delicious. I’ve never made a terrine!

    Niamhs last blog post..Roast Pork Belly, cooked simply

  24. Keri

    This looks really good, I can practically taste it. I’ve not made terrine either but have been meaning to for ages.

    Keris last blog post..Dulce de Leche Brownies

  25. james

    Looks great. I delved into ham hocks for the first time last weekend too – ham hock/ saffron/ pea/ broad bean risotto. Long live the ham hock I say!……

    jamess last blog post..Vegan chocolate tart with vegan ice cream

  26. Bron

    Helen – sorry to be thick but I really want to know how you ‘weight’ the terrine after you pack it into the tin? I’d always thought you could buy terrine dishes with a fitted wooden insert but that’s apparently in my imagination! So I’m curious about how you did it…

    Brons last blog post..Roasted Vegetable and Lentil Salad

  27. Helen

    Hi Bron, you are not being thick! I used a bottle of wine, it turned out to be a perfect fit! It wasn’t perfectly flat on the top (which ended up being the bottom) but it was good enough. I imagine a brick would be the ideal thing to use. In fact, I did wish I had one at the time!

  28. Bron

    Then drink it after? The upside of not having a brick! Perfect.

    Brons last blog post..Roasted Vegetable and Lentil Salad

  29. Charmaine

    love your story i too have obsession with terrine’s at the moment ! a dear friend of mine visited me this week and very coolly told me of her Ham hock terrine please guys try this it is amazing and she made it look so simple but the taste is five star
    so the usual boil ham hocks for 2 to 3 hours in what ever takes your fancy
    then peel some new potatoes yes peel them ! and simmer them slowly in goose fat with some thyme until tender drain and cool – when cool scrunch them up in your hands smashed not mashed mix with a little thyme and parsley season
    when ham hocks cool shred the meat
    line a loaf tin with cling film then parma ham
    layer ham then the potatoes repeat cover with cling film weight down and refrigerate
    the beauty of this one is its appearance plus no gooey jelly making it less like a tin of dog food
    i was so impressed i like you rushed back to the butcher to stock up on more hocks to try various recipes discovered on line

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