1 bunch of parsley, stalks chopped and green leaves kept for garnishing
3 springs of thyme
2 tins butter beans, drained
1/ Leave to ham hock to soak in water over night; this will remove some of the salt.
2/ When you are ready to start place the ham hock, vegetables (Except the butter beans and parsley leaves) into as big a stock pot as you have and cover with approximately 3 litres of cold water.
3/ Bring to the boil and simmer for 4 hours skimming the residue regularly until the ham is cooked and the meat is falling off the bone. You will have to keep topping up with cold water to keep the hocks submerged.
4/ Remove the ham hocks from the pot and once cooled, pick out the big chunks of meat and discard the fat. Don't be alarmed there is a suprising amount of fat on these little buggers. Using your fingers tear the ham into bite site shreds.
5/ Add the and butterbeans to the ham stock and warm through, skimming if needed. Just before serving garnish with fresh thyme and parsley.
Pork shanks, ham hocks or pig knuckles are on order for dinner on Thursday night so in preparation I walked the drizzly half mile to my favoured butcher. £14.00 later and the little pigs are soaking in water ready to be transformed.