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Faggots is a traditional British dish eaten widely across the UK in the first half of the 20th century. They are essentially meatballs of minced pig offal with herbs and bread crumbs. Faggots had been around for at least a hundred years before the second world war but gained in popularity when food rationing started to take effect. They remained as a popular cheap meal until the 1960s when changing trends in food and lifestyle led to the gradual decline in their popularity. The dish however never fully lost favour with the British public and they are still widely available today. Wales, the Midlands and traditional coal mining areas have retained a connection with the dish and faggots and can usually be found in local butchers in these areas. All the successful recipes are stored in the Recipe Directory.
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It's hard to generalize about home made faggots because every household is likely to maintain a slightly different version of the recipe but we think of Welsh faggots or Ffagod as being primarily based on liver with a strong element of suet. In the south east you can find recipes with several different pork ingredients and breadcrumbs are preferred over suet, the size and texture of faggots can also be very varied. In our experience the French pork crépine or crépinette has very little similarity with faggots. Many independent butchers make their own and recipes still exist in many households, you'll find faggots in the freezer compartment of your local supermarket and in some restaurants that specialise in more traditional English dishes.
Faggots are usually served with peas, gravy and mash. Follow a reliable recipe, use good quality ingredients and you'll have a delicious and warming meal.
If you enjoyed making this meal you may also like to try our Lancashire hot pot recipe.
Preparation Time: 50 Minutes
Cooking Time: 2 Hours
People tend to love or hate faggots, but these beauties, freshly made in faggot gravy bare little resemblance to their distant cousins, which you may have seen in the deep freeze at your local supermarket.
Ingredients: Serves 4
1 pigs liver - diced
1 pigs heart - diced
6 rashers streaky bacon - cut into strips
250g pork belly - diced
2 medium sized onions - peeled and sliced
100g bread crumbs
2 tsp of finely chopped fresh sage
Salt and pepper to taste
A large knob of butter
"Dear Buster, when I lived in France I often had a dish called crepine du porc, this was very similar to faggots, is this where they originate?
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