Hogget, anchovy, wild garlic, sprouting broccoli

This advanced recipe from Nicholas Balfe uses two different forms of hogget, which is the culinary term for a young sheep that is one to two years old. It's a great spring dish to make the most of this under-appreciated cut of lamb. Wild garlic can be found in some greengrocers in the spring, but is hard to find at other times of the year. You could substitute Chinese chives for a similar flavour.

First published in 2023




Braised hogget shoulder and potato terrine

Hogget Jus

Anchovy mayonnaise

Wild garlic salsa verde

Hogget loin



To make the braised hogget shoulder and potato terrine, first preheat the oven to 100°C/gas mark ½


Sweat down the mirepoix in a large pan with a little oil until caramelised, about 15 minutes

  • oil
  • 1kg mirepoix, equal parts celery, onion and carrot

Season the hogget shoulder all over and brown in a large pan along with mirepoix

  • 1 hogget shoulder, bone in

Cover the hogget and mirepoix with stock (top up with water if necessary), and braise in the oven at 100°C for 8 hours

  • 4l chicken stock

Once cooked, allow the shoulder to cool then strain the hogget stock through a fine mesh sieve


Skim the fat from the hogget stock and then set the stock aside


Shred the meat and season it with salt and pepper. Mix the meat with some rendered hogget fat, strained hogget stock and the parsley and wild garlic


Preheat the oven to 150°C/gas mark 2


Toss the potatoes with the remaining warm, rendered fat


Fill just under half of a gastro with sliced potato, then add a layer of the hogget shoulder meat. Top the shoulder meat with another layer of potatoes, going right to the very top of the tray


Cover with another layer of parchment and a lid, and bake at 150°C for 2 hours or until tender


Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Press the terrine overnight in the refrigerator by topping it with a tray, and then adding about 5kg of weight (tins, bottles of oil etc.)


The next day, portion the terrine into 5cm x 5cm x 2cm squares


To make the hogget jus, sweat down the onions, carrot, celery and garlic in a large pan with a little oil until caramelised, about 15 minutes


Add the tomato paste and cook out for a few minutes. Add the thyme and rosemary, then the wine and bring to the boil


Add the reserved hogget stock from braising the shoulder, turn the heat down to a simmer and reduce by one third (this will take at least one hour)


While the sauce reduces, make the anchovy mayonnaise. Blend the anchovies, garlic and thyme leaves together in a food processor until a thick paste is formed


Add the egg yolk and mustard and blend until smooth. Slowly pour in the oil in a steady stream, while the machine is running. Season with sherry vinegar

  • 75g of egg yolk, pasteurised
  • 50g of Dijon mustard
  • 300ml of vegetable oil
  • 100ml of olive oil
  • 20ml of sherry vinegar

Pass the reduced sauce through a chinois


Return the strained stock to a pan and reduce it by half, skimming any scum that forms as you go


Remove the jus from the heat and add the lemon thyme. Infuse the jus with the lemon thyme for 30 minutes


While the jus infuses, make the salsa verde. Finely chop all the herbs, capers and cornichons and mix together with the mustard, oil and vinegar. Season to taste and set aside


Pass the jus through a chinois again and whisk in about 100g of the rendered hogget fat and Muscatel vinegar to taste

  • 100g of lamb fat, ideally rendered from the hogget
  • Muscatel vinegar to taste

When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 150°C/ gas mark 2 for roasting the hogget loin


Season each hogget portion all over with salt

  • short loin of hogget, or leg muscle, trimmed of sinew but fat on, trimmed and portioned to 200g pieces (100g per person)
  • salt

Heat a sauté pan over a medium heat with some rendered hogget fat

  • lamb fat, ideally rendered from the hogget

Place the meat fat side down in the pan and render out some of the fat (about 3-5 minutes, depending how thick the fat is)


Add the butter, garlic, thyme and rosemary. Brown the loin on all sides, basting continuously with the rendered fat


Transfer the loin to the 150°C oven until the internal temperature reaches 54°C, about 10 minutes. Set aside to rest for 3-6 minutes


Sear the cut sides of the pressed hogget shoulder and potato terrine in a pan with a little rendered fat. Transfer to the oven to warm through


Meanwhile, preheat a barbecue or grill to searing hot


Grill the sprouting broccoli on the barbecue or under the grill, basting it in more hogget fat as you go


Season the broccoli with salt and dress in some of the wild garlic salsa verde


To serve, place a pound coin-size blob of anchovy mayonnaise in the centre of the plate


Slice the roast hogget in half and place it cut side up on the plate


Put the potato terrine on one side and the barbecued broccoli on the other. Dress the meat with the jus and serve immediately

First published in 2023

Following the huge success of his trio of London restaurants Salon, Levan and Larry’s, Nicholas Balfe relocated to Somerset in 2021 to open his newest venture Holm, where provenance and seasonality play a larger role in his food than ever before.

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