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Our Sunday dinner this week was a gammon joint, slow cooked in cider and chicken stock. It gave us a lovely meal and plenty of leftovers for this week.

Last night we had slices of gammon with a mushroom and sage sauce, leeks cooked very gently in butter, and some lovely fresh asparagus that I picked at the PYO place on Saturday. I’m going to give you the recipe here, and there are photos below.

I’m not used to writing recipes, so feedback is welcome. If I’m putting in too much detail then skim through it, but I’d like someone who’s not confident in their cooking skills to be able to make this easily. If I’m not putting enough detail, do tell me! I used two pans and a griddle, but if you’re not that fussed you could do the leeks and mushrooms in the same pan and maybe grill or steam the asparagus.

This is a low carb recipe, meaning that it’s very low on carbs and fairly high in fat. If you’re eating a low carb diet, you won’t lay down that butter and cream as fat stores, because there isn’t a high enough carbohydrate content to trigger the insulin response (much more about this later). So, this is a healthy meal if you’re eating low-carb, it’s a bit of a buttery creamy treat if not. 😉

Gammon                                                   Butter – lots of it!
Chestnut mushrooms                                 Olive oil
Leeks                                                        Couple of cloves of garlic
Asparagus                                                 Sage
Double cream                                            Black pepper

Get everything ready first:

Finely slice the leeks; slice off the root and remove the outermost layer if it’s dirty. Slice with a sharp knife at 1cm intervals until you’re getting into the green area. Peel off the top couple of green layers to check for dirt underneath, rinse it away and you can cut a little more. You only want the white and very pale green bits though. Repeat with all your leeks, I used 3 largish ones for two of us.
Dice the mushrooms and snap the very ends off the asparagus.
Crush and chop the garlic (garlic is much easier to peel if you cut off the end and then crush or bang the clove with the back of the knife – the skin just slips off), and finely chop the sage. I chose sage as the herb because it traditionally goes well with pork.

foaming butter with garlic just added

foaming butter with garlic just added

Heat a generous knob of butter in a pan and heat until it’s gently foaming, then add a few drops of olive oil to stop it burning. Chuck in the leeks and toss to coat in the butter. Cover the pan and keep it on the lowest heat you can. Give them a stir regularly to make sure they aren’t browning; you just want to be sweating them, almost. Keep them like that for 20 mins or so until they are very soft.

Meanwhile in another pan, melt some more butter with a dash of olive oil. When foaming, add the garlic and give it a stir, then quickly add the mushrooms (never let garlic burn like I sometimes do because it will taste very bitter) and half the sage. Keep stirring to thoroughly coat them in the garlicky butter, until they start to give out some moisture. Turn the heat down then and you can leave them be for a while to reduce down.

When the leeks are almost done and the liquid given out by the mushrooms has evaporated off, brush your asparagus spears with olive oil and heat your griddle pan over a fairly high heat. Add a slosh of cream, the rest of the sage and plenty of black pepper to the mushroom.

Line up the asparagus on the griddle and don’t move them for a minute or so – how long they take will depend on how thick they are and how hot your griddle is – use the one on the end to have a peek underneath, and when it’s showing scorch lines, roll them all over. Thin asparagus on a hot griddle will cook pretty quickly. I laid the slices of gammon on the griddle too, to heat them through.

Serve. Enjoy.