Foie gras and ham knuckle terrine by Marcus Wareing

11 September 2006
Foie gras and ham knuckle terrine by Marcus Wareing

To prepare the ham hocks (for two terrines)


3 x 1.5kg (approx) ham hocks
7 litres light chicken stock(or water)
3 carrots (about 400g)
2 onions (about 400g)
1 stick celery
1 large bouquet garni (leek, peppercorns,bay leaf, star anise,coriander seed)
Sprigs of thyme


Soak the ham hocks for 24 hours. Wash them and change the water four times during this period. Rinse thoroughly after soaking.

Put the hocks in a pan of cold chicken stock (or water) with carrots, onion, celery, bouquet garni and thyme. The hocks should be completely immersed. Bring to the boil, skim and put on the side of the range or on a very low flame. Simmer for about five hours, making sure that the liquid doesn't boil or the meat will toughen, dry out and become stringy. You can tell when the hocks are ready by pulling out the smaller bone to which the meat is attached. It should come away easily without any resistance.

Take the hocks out of the liquid. Pull away the rind which covers them and discard it. Roughly flake the meat with your fingers. Do not season.

To prepare the foie gras (for two terrines)

To make the terrine you will need two or three 25cm non-stick pans, and a large rack over a stainless steel tray.


1.5kg foie gras pieces, nerves removed, cut into1cm slices
Salt and pepper


Heat the pans till almost smoking. Sauté the foie gras a few pieces at a time, turning as soon as they have coloured (less than a minute). They should not be in the pan for much more than 90 seconds. Empty the pieces on to the rack, leaving the rendered fat to run off them into the tray. The fat from the first batch of foie gras should be clean. The second batch may burn, in which case it should be discarded.

To prepare the meat glaze


20ml oil
8 diced shallots
1tsp black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
4 sprigs thyme
1/2 bottle ruby port
4.5 litres brown veal stock
2.5 litres brown chicken stock


Warm the oil in a pan large enough to take the stocks. Add the shallots and soften over a low flame without colouring. Add the peppercorns, bay leaves and thyme and fry to release their aromas. Deglaze the pan with port and reduce to a syrup over a high flame. Add the stocks. Bring to the boil and skim thoroughly. If any scum clings to the edge of the pan wipe it off with a damp cloth. Simmer over a low flame for 45 minutes.

Pass the stock through a chinois into a bowl without pressing the solids. Pass the stock through muslin again into a fresh pan. Bring to the boil and reduce at a slow boil to a glaze. You will obtain about 1.5 litres. Reserve about 1 litre for the terrine.

To prepare the vinaigrette

This creamed vinaigrette accompanies the terrine.


4 parts extra virgin olive oil (use a softer French oil such as Huilerie Leblanc rather than a peppery Italian one)
1 part double cream
1 part white wine vinegar
salt and white pepper


Put all the ingredients in a jug and blitz or blend. Chill. This lightly emulsified sauce is quite fragile and will split if it is left in a hot kitchen or on a too-warm plate.

To line the terrine

The quantities given are for two one-litre terrines. To ensure that they turn out well and keep their shape, use four layers, one of top of the other. Leave plenty of overlap for covering the contents of the terrine before pressing.

To assemble the terrine


1 litre (approx) meat glaze, cooled but not set
Flaked ham hocks
Salt and pepper
Cooked foie gras
Reserved melted foie gras fat


Brush the base of the terrines with glaze. Cover with a layer of hock. Season very lightly. Brush the meat generously with glaze. Cover with a layer of foie gras. Brush the foie gras with glaze. Continue layering until you have used up all the meat and foie gras - probably four or five layers.

For the last layer of glaze mix about 100ml glaze with about 100g foie gras fat and paint it on to the top layer.

To press the terrine

The contents of the terrine willbe about a centimetre above the rim. After pressing it should form a neat brick when turned out. To achieve this finish you have to prepare a block of wood with the inner dimensions of the terrine.

Fold the layers of film over the contents of the terrine. Trim the ends with kitchen scissors so that this covering layer lies flat and even.

Lay a block of wood on each terrine. Transfer to the fridge and place a weight (at least 1kg) on each one. Leave for not less than 12 hours at 2-4ºC before serving.

To slice the terrine

To carve a portion, turn out the terrine on to a clean board. Leave the film around the terrine. Carve a slice with a sharp, serrated, long-bladed knife such as a ham carving knife. Remove the film. Sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper and brush with a very fine layer of olive oil.

To finish the dish


1tbs (approx) creamed vinaigrette
1 slice terrine
½ tsp very finely choppedblack truffle


Pipe the vinaigrette on to the plate, making a pattern of your choice. Lay the terrine in the middle of the plate. Sprinkle the truffle around it.

Marcus Wareing

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