You’ll need to start this recipe a day ahead to soak the meat. I cook this using a sous vide machine (a machine that cooks food in a water bath at controlled temperatures).

Makes 1 large terrine

1 pig’s head cut in half, 2 ham hocks, 10 g of 5-spice powder, 10 g of cumin, 10 g of chilli flakes, 10 g of ground ginger, 5 star anise, 5 cloves, 3 cinnamon sticks, sprig of thyme, 1 bay leaf, 500ml of cold chicken stock, 3 sticks of black pudding, 100 g each, 500 ml apple juice, salt and freshly ground black pepper.

For the pickled mushrooms

1 kg of button mushrooms, 600ml of white wine sugar, 30 g sugar, 2 tablespoons sea salt, 1 red chilli, 1 garlic clove, 1 sprig thyme and one bay leaf.

The day before, singe the pig’s head to remove all the fine hair, and cut off the ears. Soak the pig’s head and ears in cold water for 6-8 hours.

Soak the ham hocks in a separate bowl of cold water for 8 hours. The next day, drain the pig’s head in a large saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to boil. Pour away the water, cover with clean cold water and bring back to the boil. Repeat this process once more, then bring to the boil again and skim off any scum that forms on the surface.

Add all the spices, thyme and bay leaf, lower the heat and cook gently for 8 hours or until cooked and the meat shreds easily. Drain the ham hocks, then place in a sous vide bag. Pour in the cold chicken stock, vacuum seal and place in a water bath or sous vide machine to cook at 80 degrees C for 6 hours.

Pick the meat from the pig’s head, place in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Pour the chicken stock from the cooked ham hocks into a small saucepan and place over a high heat to reduce until the mixture is just sticky enough to bind the ham. Pick the meat from the ham hocks and place into a large saucepan. Stir in the produced chicken stock and season with salt and pepper.

Peel the skin from the black pudding, and place the black pudding in a saucepan to warm up until you are ready to assemble the terrine.

Line a terrine mould, 20 x 10 cm, with clingfilm and fill it with alternate layers of ham hock, pig’s head meat and a spreading of black pudding, finishing with a layer of ham hock. Wrap over the clingfilm and press it down with a weight (a good option is a can of baked beans), then leave to set until cool.

For the pig’s ears

One of my favourite chefs Gordon Ramsey has a cooking series on pigs you can watch on YouTube. Place the apple juice in a saucepan over a high heat until it reduces down to 100ml, then leave to cool. Place the pig’s ears into a sous vide bag, and pour in the apple juice. Vacuum seal the bag and place in a water bath or sous vide machine to cook at 80 degrees C for 6-8 hours. When cooked, chop the meat into small cubes, fry in a hot pan in a little oil until golden, then serve with the terrine.

For the pickled mushrooms

Wash and dry the mushrooms, then place on a tray or in a wide shallow container that you can cover with a lid. In a saucepan, boil the vinegar with the sugar, salt, chilli and garlic for 2 minutes, then add the thyme and bay leaf. Pour the mixture over the mushrooms, cover, and leave to cool. When cold, strain off the liquid and pour the mushrooms into sterilized preserving jars and seal.

To serve

Serve slices of the terrine with a few pickled mushrooms and pig’s ear cubes on the side.

Jules is the editor in chief of, a super lifestyle blog. She lives in Phoenix Arizona and enjoys cooking for friends and family.