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Recipes for Busy Moms Recipes for Busy Moms

Ingredient of the week, April 17: Ham

Posted by on Apr. 17, 2011 at 9:21 AM
  • 15 Replies

 

Ham is  a cut of meat from the thigh of the hind leg of a pig. Nearly all hams sold today are fully cooked or cured. Ham is considered by many in America to be the ultimate holiday entree.
Domestication of pigs for food dates back to 4900 B.C. in China and by 1500 B.C., Europe had followed suit. Although Christopher Columbus had eight pigs on board when he left Spain for the new world, it is explorer Hernando de Soto whose 13 pigs became the breeding stock for America's pork industry. By the 17th century, most American farmers raised pigs. The shelf-life of salt pork and bacon made both staple in most kitchens. 
 George A. Hormel & Company pioneered canned hams in America in 1926. Country ham is first mentioned in print in 1944, referring to a method of curing and smoking done in the rural sections of Virginia, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Vermont and other nearby states. The term now refers to a style, rather than location. The United States largely inherited its traditions relating to ham and pork from 17th-century Britain and 18th-century France, the latter especially in Louisiana. The French often used wet cure processed hams that are the foundation stock of several modern dishes, like certain gumbos and sandwiches. Until the very early twentieth century, men living in the southern Appalachians would drive their pigs to market in the flatlands below each Autumn, fattening up their stock on chestnuts and fallen mast, much like their Scottish forebearers did for centuries. Further, archaeological evidence suggests that the early settlers of Jamestown (men largely from the West Midlands) built swine pens for the pigs they brought with them and, once established, also carried on an ancient British tradition of slaughtering their pigs and producing their pork in mid-November. To this day, the result is that in many areas, a large ham, not a turkey, is the centerpiece of a family Christmas dinner.

 Fresh ham is an uncured hind leg of pork. Country ham is uncooked, cured, dried, smoked-or-unsmoked, made from a single piece of meat from the hind leg of a hog or from a single piece of meat from a pork shoulder (picnic ham). Virginia's famous Smithfield ham, a country ham, must be grown and produced in or around Smithfield, Virginia, to be sold as such. Similar, lesser known hams from Tennessee and the Appalachians have a similar method of preparation, but are more likely to include honey in their cures and be hickory smoked.
 
Sugar is common in many dry hams in the United States; it is used to cover the saltiness. The majority of common wet-cured ham available in U.S. supermarkets is of the "city ham" or "sweet cure" variety, in which brine is injected into the meat for a very rapid curing suitable for mass market. Traditional wet curing requires immersing the ham in a brine for an extended period, often followed by light smoking.

In addition to the main categories, some processing choices can affect legal labeling. A 'smoked' ham must have been smoked by hanging over burning wood chips in a smokehouse or an atomized spray of liquid smoke such that the product appearance is equivalent; a "hickory-smoked" ham must have been smoked using only hickory. However, injecting "smoke flavor" is not legal grounds for claiming the ham was "smoked"; these are labeled "smoke flavor added". Hams can only be labelled "honey-cured" if honey was at least 50% of the sweetener used, is at least 3% of the formula, and has a discernible effect on flavor. So-called "lean" and "extra lean" hams must adhere to maximum levels of fat and cholesterol per 100 grams of product.

One of the most popular and expensive hams in the United States is Smithfield or Virginia ham. Through a special curing process, Smithfield ham ages. In that time mold may grow on the outside of the ham, while the rest of the meat continues to age. This process produces a distinctive flavor, but the mold layer must be scrubbed off the ham before being cooked or served.

Spiral sliced ham has become popular option for bone-in or boneless hams sold in the US. In the spiral cutting process, the ham is firmly affixed, on the top and bottom, to a rotating base, which is gradually lowered as a blade is applied. This creates one single continuous slice.

Are you having baked ham for Easter? How do you bake yours? Do you use a glaze? What do you do with leftovers?

by on Apr. 17, 2011 at 9:21 AM
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Replies (1-10):
SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 17, 2011 at 9:40 AM

 

Maple-Orange Glaze
3/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup orange marmalade
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon Combine all ingredients in small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture is thick, syrupy, and reduced to 1 cup, 5 to 10 minutes; set aside.

Cherry-Port Glaze
1/2 cup ruby port
1/2 cup cherry preserves
1cup packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
Simmer port in small saucepan over medium heat until reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and cook, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves and mixture is thick, syrupy, and reduced to 1 cup, 5 to 10 minutes; set aside.

 

SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 17, 2011 at 9:41 AM

 I made a glaze for the ham that went over really well
Fresh Pineapple cut into chunks. I put the juice from the pineapple (about half a cup) added 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/2 stick butter, and 1/2 cup of coconut rum, and a little juice from Maraschino cherries. After that was heated and all melted together, it was not thick enough, so I thickened it using cornstarch dissolved in cold water(about 2 T. cornstarch and 1 T. water. )I stuck some of the pineapple chunks and cherries on the ham, then used some on the ham, and put the rest of the chunks and cherries in the glaze to pass at the table. Everyone loved it. This could also be made with canned pineapple.

Undomesticated
by on Apr. 17, 2011 at 9:47 AM

I make ham with brown sugar and maple syrup glaze.  But, since I don't eat pork, I only make it once a year, usually Thanksgiving, for DH and family since I'm the only one who doesn't eat it :)

SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 17, 2011 at 9:55 AM

 How to Bake a Ham with Pineapple
Baking a ham in the oven is the most common method used to cook ham. Adding pineapple slices and juice to the ham, makes the ham very delicious and succulent. The cooking time, will depend on the size of the ham. It takes about 15 to 20 minutes for every pound of ham to be cooked well.

Ingredients

  • Ham

Glaze Ingredients

  • Brown Sugar 1 cup
  • Honey ΒΌ cup
  • Dry Mustard 2 teaspoons
  • Cloves 10 to 15
  • Pineapple Juice 3 tablespoons
  • Pineapple slices

Basting Sauce Ingredients

  • Brown Sugar 1 cup
  • Dry Mustard 1 teaspoon
  • Orange Juice 1 cup

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, till then place the ham in the baking pan and place the pan in the oven. Insert a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the meat.
  • Bake till the readings on the meat thermometer does not reach 130 degrees.
  • Remove the ham from the oven and make cuts on the ham with a sharp knife.
  • In the slits, that you have made on the ham, insert one clove each.
  • Using toothpicks, place the pineapple slices on the ham. Mix all the glaze ingredients together. Apply the glaze all over the ham and return the ham into the oven.
  • Now you will have to baste the ham with the basting sauce every 15 minutes, till the ham is well cooked.
  • After the ham is cooked, remove the ham from the oven and let the ham stand before you start craving it.
SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 17, 2011 at 9:56 AM

 How to Bake a Ham in the Crockpot
The popular method implemented for baking ham is in the oven. However, more often than not it tends to dry the meat out. Using a crockpot to bake the ham, will give you a sweet, juicy ham, which will have the family and guests asking for more. When you decide to bake ham in the crockpot, you will have to make sure, that the size of the ham is such, that it will fit into the crockpot easily. It is recommended, to buy ham which comes with seasoning. You can use the seasoning for the ham or make use of it for some other recipe as well.

Ingredients

  • Ham with Bone
  • Apple Juice 1 cup
  • Honey 1 teaspoon
  • Honey Dijon Mustard 1 teaspoon

Method

  • Place the ham in the crockpot and pour the apple juice on the ham. The apple juice helps to keep the ham moist along with lending great flavor to the ham.
  • Mix honey and Dijon mustard in a bowl. Spread the mixture all over the ham.
    Cover the crockpot and let the ham cool on the lowest setting for about 6 to 8 hours. I recommend, you start cooking in the morning, so that the ham is cooked to perfection for dinner.
  • If case you are worried about the ham overcooking, turn the settings to keep warm, so that the ham remains warm and does not overcook.
SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 17, 2011 at 10:25 AM

 This is a quick and simple way to make a ham that always turns out moist and tender.

 Baked Ham in Oven Bag

1 tbsp. flour
1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained
1 tbsp. cornstarch
Big oven cooking bag
12 to 16 lb. fully-cooked ham
1/2 c. apple jelly
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon

Shake flour in cooking bag. Place in large roasting pan at least 2 inches deep. Lightly score surface of ham. Place ham in bag. Combine pineapple, jelly, lemon juice, cornstarch and ground cinnamon in saucepan; stir and cook until cornstarch dissolves. Bring to a boil. Simmer 1 minute. Pour sauce over ham in bag. Bake 2 1/2 to 3 1/4 hours, depending on size of ham. Oven bag insert gives precise times.
delanna6two
by Ruby Member on Apr. 19, 2011 at 9:38 AM

I love ham....I do make it for Easter and Christmas holiday sometimes.  I make it in the crock pot.  This is the recipe I use....I use a little bigger ham sometimes.

BAKED HAM IN FOIL/recipelink.com

Pour 1/2 c. water in CROCK-POT. Wrap precooked 3 to 4 pound ham in foil
place in CROCK POT. Cover and cook on High 1 hour, then Low 6 to 7 hours
or until ham is hot. If desired, sprinkle ham with liquid smoke before
wrapping in foil. 5 quart unit: if cooking larger ham, cook 1 hour on
High then Low 8 to 10 Hours.

delanna6two
by Ruby Member on Apr. 19, 2011 at 9:39 AM


Quoting SweetLuci:

 This is a quick and simple way to make a ham that always turns out moist and tender.

 Baked Ham in Oven Bag

1 tbsp. flour
1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained
1 tbsp. cornstarch
Big oven cooking bag
12 to 16 lb. fully-cooked ham
1/2 c. apple jelly
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon


Shake flour in cooking bag. Place in large roasting pan at least 2 inches deep. Lightly score surface of ham. Place ham in bag. Combine pineapple, jelly, lemon juice, cornstarch and ground cinnamon in saucepan; stir and cook until cornstarch dissolves. Bring to a boil. Simmer 1 minute. Pour sauce over ham in bag. Bake 2 1/2 to 3 1/4 hours, depending on size of ham. Oven bag insert gives precise times.

Those oven bags are great!!!.....make the meat very tender:)

KamsOne
by Jen on Apr. 19, 2011 at 9:42 AM

I am making a ham for Easter.  I buy the pre-cut ham with the glaze packet.  I like simple.  Just bake the ham for a few hours and dump the glaze on. 

KaylaMillar
by Kayla on Apr. 19, 2011 at 10:55 AM

 this is what i normally do

Quoting KamsOne:

I am making a ham for Easter.  I buy the pre-cut ham with the glaze packet.  I like simple.  Just bake the ham for a few hours and dump the glaze on. 

 

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