Try Chef’s Ham Hock Terrine & Piccalilli Recipe

Our Woodstock restaurant is lucky to have Head Chef Ben Bullen – his playful nature with flavours and his passion for hearty dishes means we have some real treats on our menu. If you can’t make it to one of our tables, why not try his ham hock terrine and piccalilli recipe for yourself at home? He’ll talk you through it below…

 You will need:

  • 1/2 large cauliflower in florets
  • 1 large Shallot, fine rings
  • 1/2 cucumber diced and salted for 10 minutes
  • 300ml white wine vinegar
  • 150ml malt vinegar
  • Quarter tspn dried chilli
  • 150g sugar
  • 35g English mustard powder
  • 15g turmeric
  • 2 tsp corn flour

Salt your cauliflower and shallot for 24 hours – you only need to salt the cucumber for 10 minutes whilst you prep. Sprinkle both generously with salt after time has elapsed, then wash off the cauliflower and shallot and drain well.

Boil vinegars and mix all your dry ingredients together; once corn flour has cooked out allow to cool fully before adding the vegetables.

2 ham hocks (rinsed for 1 hour in cold water) – I source mine from local butchers.

  • 1 onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 4 parsley stalks
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 leek top
  • 10 black peppercorns

Place ham hocks in a deep pan filled with cold water and soak for 1 hour to extract as much salt from them as possible. Once you have done that, fill a clean pan with water – enough to cover the ham. 

Peel and quarter the onion, cut garlic straight in half, peel carrot before cutting in half length ways. Cut leek top in half and wash thoroughly then place all ingredients in with the ham hocks and bring to a rolling boil.

Once boiled turn down to simmer for about 4-6 hours, keep an eye on this as they may need topping up with water again to cover. Once ham hocks feel tender to touch and start to fall off the bone, leave in the water to cool down. Keep water for later!

Once cooled down pick the meat from the bone, removing any fat or gristle. Chop 100g of parsley and add 1 tablespoon of wholegrain mustard and 50g of mini capers to the meat.

Reduce 5 ladles of the ham hock stock by half and add to ham hock mix, check and adjust the seasoning. Be careful how much salt you add as the stock may well be slightly salty and will do the seasoning for you. You can also add a little acidity at this point to help enhance the flavour; for example in the restaurant we use sherry vinegar or even cider vinegar. If you have neither of these then lemon juice will work just fine.

Line a terrine mould or any form of rectangle mould (I.E a rectangle cake tin will work the same) with a double layer of cling film. Place the ham hock mix in the mould and allow to set for 12 hours.

Once set, serve simply with a generous helping of Piccalilli and some delicious sourdough bread. My favourite sourdough comes from an amazing baker in Lechlade called Sourdough Revolution. I love the sheer simplicity of this recipe - when it’s executed perfectly it cannot be beaten! It is one of my favourite combinations and goes well with a nice hearty cider. If enjoying as a starter, roasted cod, chorizo, new potatoes and fresh gremolata would be perfect to follow as a main.

Do share your attempts with us on Facebook or Instagram – we would love to see them! Don’t forget, our restaurant accepts reservations so contact us in advance if you would like to join us for something to eat – we can accommodate walk-ins on occasion. It’s not enough that we have a unique restaurant; you’ll struggle to find eclectic Oxfordshire hotels that have flair like The Feathers. 

To dine at our Woodstock restaurant, book online or call the team today.