Buy a meaty ham hock for only a couple of pounds from your butcher, and make this delicious meal!
1 ham hock (or 2 if you want it extra meaty and don’t mind spending a little extra)
1 onion, quartered
2 carrots, quartered
2 celery sticks, roughly chopped
2 bay leaves
Put all these ingredients in a pan, cover in cold water and simmer for 3 hours, skimming of any froth if it appears on the surface of the water. When they are done the meat should come away from the bone easily. Remove and set aside to cool for 20-30 mins, which will allow the meat to rest and soften, and save the liquid that they cooked in, discarding the vegetables.
1 tbsp butter
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
250g green lentils (or Puy if you prefer, although check the packet as the cooking time may be different)
1 tbsp chopped parsley
Meanwhile, fry the onion and carrot in butter, and when softened add the lentils along with 1.5 pints (about 900ml) of the cooking liquid from the ham. Simmer for around 20-30 mins or until tender (you may need to add a little more stock as they cook). At the same time, remove the fat from the ham hocks and shred the meat. Once the lentils are cooked then drain them, season with salt, a drizzle of olive oil and the parsley, and serve topped with the shredded meat.