1. To prepare the pig’s head and the trotters, first remove any hair with a razor or blow torch. Place them all in a large stockpot or casserole dish. Add half the vegetables and the bay leaves and cover with cold water. Add the salt and bring to the boil then lower
the heat and simmer gently, covered for 3 hours. At the end of the cooking time the meat should be soft and falling away from the bones.
2. Remove pig’s head and trotters from the pot and strain and reserve the poaching liquid. Add rest of vegetables to strained liquid and boil vigorously until reduced by three-quarters, skimming from time to time. Remove from heat and leave to cool.
3. Once the head and trotters are cool enough to handle, remove all the bones and discard them. Use your fingers to break the meat into smallest possible chunks – retain as much of the skin and eyeballs as you can bear. Mix the parsley into the meat.
4. Line a 1L terrine or circular mould with several layers of plastic wrap, leaving a big overhang. Scatter the shredded meat and parsley in, pressing gently as you go, so there are no air pockets. Pour in enough of the reduced poaching liquid to reach the top of the meat. Bring up the overhang of the plastic wrap and fold neatly to cover the surface of the terrine, place a weighted plate or board on top and put it in the refrigerator to set.
5. To serve the brawn, turn it out of its mould onto a platter and cut it into slices. Peel away the plastic wrap before serving and accompany with a selection of your favourite pickles.
Gamay or Nero d’Avola