Ham, pea & polenta cakes

Contains pork – recipe is for non-Muslims only
The gluten-free golden yellow cornmeal creates a crispy coating to cover a ham, pea, potato and mint filling- perfect with salad for lunch

  • Prep:20 mins
    Cook:25 mins
  • Serves 3
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 540
  • fat 24g
  • saturates 6g
  • carbs 54g
  • sugars 10g
  • fibre 6g
  • protein 27g
  • salt 1.9g


  • 140g sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 140g floury potatoes (such as King Edward), peeled and chopped
  • 100g frozen peas, defrosted
  • 100g shredded ham hock
  • small handful mint leaves, chopped
  • zest 1 lemon
  • 3 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • 6 tbsp fine polenta or 4 tbsp gluten-free plain flour
  • pinch of cayenne pepper, plus a pinch to serve
  • 3 eggs and 1 egg white
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • crème fraîche and dressed rocket leaves, to serve


  1. Put the sweet and white potatoes into a pan of cold salted water, bring to the boil, then simmer for 10-15 mins or until really tender. Drain well and mash, check the seasoning, then set aside to cool.

  2. Tip the mash into a large bowl along with the peas, ham hock, mint, zest, spring onions, 3 tbsp polenta (or 2 tbsp flour), the cayenne pepper and some seasoning. Whisk the egg white and add it, too. Mix well.

  3. Form the mixture into 6 cakes. Tip the remaining 3 tbsp polenta onto a plate and roll the cakes in it to coat. The mix will be quite wet at this stage, but the extra polenta will help to keep them together during cooking. Cover and chill for 15 min.

  4. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over a medium heat. Add the cakes and fry for 3-4 mins each side or until golden and warmed through. Meanwhile, poach the remaining 3 eggs in a pan of barely simmering water for about 3 mins until the yolk is soft and the white is set.

  5. Put the cakes on plates with a spoonful of crème fraîche, top with the poached eggs and a little cayenne. Serve with dressed rocket.

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