Baked ham

Baked ham

By
From
How I cook
Serves
8, plus extra to serve later
Photographer
Jason Lowe

My mother always cooks a wonderful ham at Christmas, serving it with a fresh mango chutney, sharpened with lime juice and finished with coriander. She also accompanies it with a salad, consisting of roasted beetroot, creamy mellow feta and walnuts, which we all love. It’s funny how food ritual makes for the best memories. Here I’m serving the ham with more traditional accompaniments. A pot of good mustard is a welcome addition, but spiced fruits add another dimension altogether.

A large ham will provide plenty for everyone and leave you with a sizeable joint to carve and serve at room temperature with salads, or with eggs for breakfast, or in sandwiches in the days after Christmas.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
5-6kg ham (naturally salted), ideally on the bone
3 celery sticks, roughly chopped
1 yellow onion, peeled and cut into wedges
4 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
12 black peppercorns
4 bay leaves

Glaze

Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
3 tablespoons soft brown sugar
1 orange, finely grated zest and juiced
handful cloves
150ml white wine

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
dijon or other mustard
see method for ingredients

Method

  1. Put the ham to soak in a large bowl of cold water for at least 12 hours before cooking, to remove excess salt.
  2. Put the vegetables into a large stockpot or heavy-based pan that is large enough to hold the ham comfortably. Place the ham on top of them and pour over enough water to cover the ham completely. Add the peppercorns and bay leaves.
  3. Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and set over a medium heat. Once the water has come to the boil, turn down the heat. Allow the ham to simmer gently for 3–3½ hours, depending on size, topping up the water as necessary – it is important that the ham is completely submerged throughout the simmering process. When the ham is cooked, the meat will be firm and opaque. Remove from the heat and leave the ham to cool in its liquor to room temperature.
  4. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Lift the ham out of the pan and place on a board. Discard the liquor.
  5. For the glaze, mix the mustard, brown sugar and orange zest and juice together in a bowl.
  6. Remove the skin from the ham, leaving most of the fat layer in place. Score the fat in a diamond pattern and stud each diamond with a clove. Spoon the glaze evenly over the top. Place the ham in a roasting tin and pour the wine around the ham. Roast for about 20–30 minutes until the glaze is a glistening rich colour and slightly set. Set aside until you are ready to serve. Accompany with a pot of mustard and Spiced pears.

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