Pig’s trotter and lentils

Pig’s trotter and lentils

Zampone e lenticchie

Laura Edwards

Zampone (from zampa, pig’s trotter) is a speciality of northern Italy. It is a boned pig’s trotter stuffed with the gelatinous part of the trotter and pork meat. The trotter can be bought ready prepared and pre-cooked, in its own boiling bag. (You could also substitute the trotter with cotechino, a large pork sausage/ salami that needs to be cooked.)

Pigs’ trotters are eaten traditionally by many Italians at New Year, usually, as here, with lentils (which represent money to come). A common accompaniment is mostarda di Cremona, which is fruit preserved in a syrup flavoured with mustard or horseradish.


Quantity Ingredient
200g castelluccio lentils
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
100g celery stalks, diced
100g sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
a few fresh sage leaves
1 small sprig fresh rosemary
1 zampone or cotechino sausage
freshly ground black pepper
1 x 450 g jar mustard fruits, to serve


  1. Check the lentils for impurities such as little stones. Wash the lentils well.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, then fry the garlic for a few minutes. Add the celery, tomatoes, washed lentils and the herbs, and cover with double its volume of water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 30 minutes, adding a little more water if you think it necessary.
  3. Meanwhile in another pan, cook the pre-cooked zampone in the bag in plenty of water for 20 minutes cooking if you were using a raw trotter or a cotechino.
  4. Drain the warm lentils if there is too much water, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Put the lentils on a serving plate, cut the sausage into slices and place on top of the lentils. Serve with the mustard fruits.
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