James Wheeler

How to Cook one of Tom's Favourite Dishes!

Whilst Tom was performing in St. Petersburg recently, he visited the Dickens Pub where he enjoyed a meal of Bavarian style Pork Shanks with Bacon Lentils, courtesy of proprietor James Wheeler. We thought we'd share the recipe with you, so you can enjoy a meal that Tom has too!

Bavarian style Pork Shanks with Bacon Lentils à la Dickens Pub Ingredients: Pork Shanks Marinade:– Lager Beer, Garlic, Salt, Worcester Sauce, Honey, Thyme, Rosemary, Sage.


1. Bind the shanks in cling-film or cooking twine to hold the meat to the bone during the first cooking process.

2. Poach in slightly salted water for 3½ hours, then allow to rest for another ½ hour in the un-heated liquid.

3. Remove the bindings from the cooked shanks, drain & place them in the beer-herb marinade solution for at least 6 hours. (This is a time-consuming recipe!)

4. The shanks will need a further 20 minutes in the oven at around 170 C. Tip: Splash the marinade onto the skins at the end of this cooking process in the oven to add caramel flavours.

Bacon Lentils Ingredients: Lentils: Brown, Green, or Le Puy (75g per person). Bay leaf, [all below as much as desired – to taste] Bacon, Onion, Garlic, Thyme, Butter.


1. Boil same amount of water (/stock if desired,) as lentils. Add lentils, bring to boil again then cover and simmer with a bay leaf for a further 20 minutes.

2. Cook the chopped bacon, chopped onions, garlic and thyme in a deep casserole pan. Until browned then add butter to the mix.

3. When the lentils are cooked add them to the casserole dish and mix with the rest of the ingredients. The butter will help to spread the flavour through the lentils.

4. Add a table-spoon of double cream to the bacon, onions and, garlic and mix, before the lentils finally join them. (Tablespoon/person).

5. Make sure the lentils are warmed through. Ladle into shallow bowl dish, place the pork shank on top,  serve and enjoy.