Sous vide suckling pig with chou farci, hummus and chickpea fricassee

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Colin McGurran uses three different cuts of suckling pig in this fabulous recipe – the chou farci is stuffed with minced leg, while the belly and loin are cooked sous vide for a beautifully tender finish. Ask your butcher for suckling pig bones for the sauce.

First published in 2015




Suckling pig loin

  • 250g of suckling pig loin

Suckling pig belly

  • 250g of suckling pig belly, boned
  • 1 sprig of thyme, chopped
  • 1 sprig of rosemary, chopped
  • salt

Suckling pig sauce

Chou farci

Pickled onions


Charred leeks

Chickpea fricassee

To serve


  • Bar sealer
  • Large vacuum bags
  • Small vacuum bags
  • Water bath
  • Mincer
  • Blender
  • Muslin cloth


Preheat a water bath to 85°C
Season the belly with the chopped herbs and salt, then place in a large vacuum bag. Seal with a bar sealer and cook in the water bath for 7 hours
  • 250g of suckling pig belly, boned
  • salt
  • 1 sprig of thyme, chopped
  • 1 sprig of rosemary, chopped
After this time, remove the belly from the bag and drain. Place the belly between 2 trays lined with baking paper, sit a weight on top and press in the fridge until cold
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
To make the sauce, roast the suckling pig bones in the oven for 1 hour, or until caramelised
Place a large saucepan over a high heat and add a splash of oil. Fry the vegetables until well-coloured, then add the thyme and tomato purée
Add the roasted pork bones and cover with chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and cook for 3 hours, topping up with more stock if necessary during cooking
  • 1l chicken stock
Pass the sauce through 3 layers of muslin cloth into a clean pan and add the wine. Bring to the boil and reduce by 2/3 to reach a sauce consistency
For the farci, mince the leg meat with the smoked bacon and combine with enough pork sauce to bind. Season with salt and place in the fridge to set for at least 1 hour. Once set, roll into 40g balls and return to the fridge
Blanch the cabbage leaves in boiling salted water for 2 minutes then refresh in iced water. Drain and dry thoroughly on kitchen paper
Lay a strip of cling film on the work surface and a cabbage leaf on top. Place a ball of farci in the centre of the leaf and wrap the cabbage and cling film around. Repeat with the remaining leaves and balls of farci and transfer to the fridge to set for at least 30 minutes before cooking
Preheat a water bath to 55°C
Trim the suckling pig loin of any sinew and cut into 40g portions. Place in individual vacuum bags with salt and a dash of oil and seal with a bar sealer. Cook the loin in the water bath for 30 minutes
  • 250g of suckling pig loin
For the pickled onions, place the water, vinegar, sugar and spices in a pan and bring to the boil. Boil until the sugar dissolves, remove from the heat and pour over the onions. Leave to cool
Once cool, peel the onions and place back into the pickle until needed
Preheat the oven to 120°C/gas mark 1/4
Cook the chou farci in the oven for 10 minutes, then roll in the suckling pig sauce and keep warm
To make the hummus, place everything in a blender with 175ml of hot water and blitz until smooth
Blanch the leeks whole in boiling salted water for around 5 minutes until just cooked, then refresh in iced water. Drain thoroughly with kitchen paper
Cut each leek in half, and then into 3. Char in a frying pan without oil until caramelised and keep warm
For the fricassee, soften the shallot and garlic in butter without colour in a small saucepan. Add the chickpeas and 2 tbsp of the pickled onions and cook for a further 2 minutes. Finish with lemon juice, salt and chives
To finish the pork loin, remove from the bag and dry on kitchen paper. Fry in a hot frying pan with a little oil until caramelised then leave to rest for a few minutes. In the meantime, sear the belly portions on the cut side
Reheat the sauce and whisk in the butter just before serving
To serve, swipe a big spoonful of hummus on the plate and spoon the fricassee on top. Place the belly, loin and chou farci in a line on the centre of the plate and add the leeks. Spoon over the warm sauce and garnish with the crispy pig skin and cress
First published in 2015

Colin McGurran began his career with a burning ambition to own a red Mercedes. Almost 20 years on and he has fulfilled that ambition and much more besides.

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