Rabbit and Ham Terrine

Image of rabbit mouldWhen I decided to make a rabbit and ham terrine for Easter it made perfect sense, I thought, to use the old bunny-shaped earthenware mould I had in the cupboard. It wasn’t one of my better ideas.

I’m including a picture here for the comedy value but next time I’ll stick to a clingfilm-lined loaf tin. The result was a little too life-like and not in a good way: I hadn’t taken into account the colour of the finished terrine, a sort of mottled pink. Visually, it was a bit scary. My bunny looked like it had been skinned in an evil experiment. ‘It’s rabbit, Jim, but not as we know it.’

Still, it tasted good and as you’re far more likely to have a loaf or terrine tin handy, I’ll pass on the recipe. I used a gammon hock weighing just under half a kilo and the saddles and hind legs of two wild rabbits. You can, if you prefer, make it entirely with ham, in which case flecking it with finely chopped parsley would be a good idea. Just mix it in with the diced meat.

Rabbit and Ham Terrine

  • Servings: makes two medium terrines
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Image of rabbit and ham terrine

A tragic experiment


1 ham hock, about 500g

The saddles and hind legs of two wild rabbits

1 carrot

1 onion

2 sticks of celery

6-8 black peppercorns

A small bunch of parsley or parsley stalks

2 bay leaves

1 glass of white wine

Enough gelatine to set 1 litre of liquid


Image of ham hock and stock veg

Peel and roughly chop the vegetables and put them in a stock pot with the herbs, peppercorns and ham hock. Cover with cold water, bring to the boil and simmer for an hour. Don’t add any salt at this point.

Add the rabbit joints and the wine and cook for another 45 minutes or until the meat is tender. Remove the meat from the stock and set aside to cool, then dice most of the meat but cut the better pieces into long thin strips. Mix the diced ham and rabbit and check the seasoning, adding more salt and pepper if necessary. As you’ll be eating this cold, err on the side of stronger seasoning or it’ll taste insipid.

Image of cooked ingredients

Strain the stock, pour it back into the cleaned pan and reduce by about half … until the stock has intensified in flavour. Check the seasoning but you’ll probably find it’s salty enough.

Follow the instructions on your gelatine packet … leaves will need to be soaked in cold water for 10 minutes. When they’ve softened, squeeze out the excess water and put them in a saucepan with the litre of stock. Heat until the gelatine has dissolved.

Line two small loaf tins with cling film and put a layer of chopped meat at the bottom. Dribble over a little of the jellied stock. Cover with a layer of sliced meat and repeat until you’re nearly at the top of the terrine, ending with a layer of diced meat. Press down to ensure it’s all covered by the stock, and then chill in the fridge until set, preferably overnight.

Image of packed terrines

Unmould onto a plate and cut into thick slices. It makes a good lunch or starter with pickles and chutneys, a green salad and some country bread. Just don’t use a bunny rabbit mould.

20 thoughts on “Rabbit and Ham Terrine

  1. Oooh, he is a bit scary. I thought you were going to say you couldn’t turn it out. That’s always the problem for me with those fetching old earthenware moulds. I don’t seem very adept at the cling film thing, and if I warm the earthenware ‘just enough’, it’s always far too much. Gloop. I could make this, and pretend to ‘im indoors that it’s chicken, non?

    • I did have to dip the base in hot water, always a gamble. I did cling film the other one so it should be easier. If ‘Im Indoors isn’t gullible you could actually replace the rabbit with chicken or just make it all ham. Happy Easter! Lx

  2. Oh dear, yes I see what you mean! Specially for those of us who are squeamish about bunnies and like to think of them frolicking in the fields! Nonetheless, the terrine sounds delicious.

    • I know, pretty frightening! I like bunnies frolicking in fields too, I just don’t like them eating their way through my garden. Mr McGregor’s Revenge! Lx

    • I have sneaked a taste but am saving it for when the family get here tonight so they can have a good laugh at my expense. I may have to hand out blindfolds instead of napkins. )

  3. very scary and really rather funny. Almost reminds me of one of those funny early 70s food photos. Would just need to be surrounded by chopped aspic or something similar. I’m not keen on rabbit ever since i got food poisoning from a dodgy rabbit pie but i like the idea of making it with chciken instead.

    • Ha, yes,chopped aspic would add to the quivering quality. I know what you mean about food poisoning, I couldn’t look a mussel in the beard for years after one bout, but I happily devour them now. All the best, Lx

  4. O oh! We’ve all been there some how or another, sounds delish nevertheless. I love to eat rabbit. They were in such plague proportions here when I was a kid, and if money was tight Dad would go hunting, then it was rabbit for dinner every night that week. I never tired of it. Happy Easter Linda

  5. Oh Lor, that has made me chortle! Have you given it eyes or am I imagining that?! I am still entry-level when it comes to bunnies but I do love anything made from ham hock.

  6. I am going to try this as it sounds wonderful, though minus the bunny mould. That’s because I don’t actually have one rather than not wanting to serve a terrifyingly anatomically accurate skinned dead rabbit. I can imagine my sons would actually love it if I served this as is, bunny-shaped. That’s teen boys for you. Perhaps you should repost for Halloween! xxx

    • Yes, should have given it fangs. I would have put some herbs in it if I hadn’t used the rabbit mould as I didn’t want it to look like a mouldy rabbit, but given the finished effect I think I should have just gone for broke. 🙂

      • It’s such a shame it looked like it did – but only because it’s detracted from your fabulous sounding recipe. I actually love that it’s scary to look at – I showed the image to my sons and they actually want one, shame I don’t own a bunny mould – mine will have to be square (in both senses of the word) and less fun for it. Will let you know when I’ve made it but it may take a while as there are few butchers around that sell rabbit here. xx

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