December 17, 2011

A scrummy Boxing Day Ham - the smell of Christmas

Last year (2011) I did my first Christmas/Boxing Day/New Year Cooked Ham. I found a recipe by Richard Corrigan which was absolutely amazing so will carry on my own tradition this year again. And again this year 2016!

Today again we trooped up to Broadway Market and found David Wilkinson from Downland Produce in Wiltshire and found an amazing ham to do the trick.

So here is Richard's recipe tweaked a bit which I share with you (pix to come next week!)

This ham is poached in white WINE which makes it extra yummy (and my other half is quite a piccalilli maker too which goes so well with this - especially made a month before)

*Note - do make sure you prepare before Xmas Eve as sometimes it is difficult finding the simplest of ingredients over the holiday season (I couldn't find cloves last year ANYWHERE ... luckily we raided my mother-in-laws pantry on Xmas day!))
*Note - if you buy already cured you may want to soak in a large pot of water for 1-1/2days before you cook it (See.... need to really prepare) to remove excess salt (change water 2-3 times) *Downland Produce gammon only needs to be rinsed not soaked
*Note - make the piccalilli a month before (longer for better flavour) in saying that we ate it the day of or day after it was made and it was good too  however VERY sharp from vinegar- but better a few months later- it lasted us until summer!
Timings for a Boxing Day Ham
June - make piccalilli 
22Dec - buy your ingredients
23Dec (before going out for drinks) - soak gammon in pot of clean cold water
24Dec (before going to bed or going out whichever is more appropriate!) - change water 
25Dec - forget about the ham as you will have far too much turkey or nut roast and glasses of port!)
26Dec - It will take between 3-4hours to prepare, cook, rest and bake so plan ahead if you are serving for a meal (A 3kg joint will feed 15people and take 3hrs to cook)
Cooking Time (i.e 2hr) + 30min resting time + 20min baking  = start at least 3hrs before you want to eat


What you will need: 

1 boneless gammon (size depending on what you want and how long you want to eat it!)
* all of the ingredients below will suit any size of ham)
2 onions
6 stalks of celery (not my fav)
3 leeks cut into large pieces
1 head garlic
2 star anise
1tsp cardamom pods crushed
1/2tsp black peppercorns
750ml bottle of white wine

I made a maple glaze (glaze to suit your tastebuds - this one isn't too sweet)
To Finish:
200ml Maple Syrup (Canadian of course!)
2tbsp coarse/whole grain mustard
2tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
2tbsp soy sauce

Other things you will need:
Greeseproof/baking paper
a large Pot with tight fitting lid
Kitchen foil
Piccalilli, bread, mustard

Day of Cooking
Put all the veg  & spices in a pot, place the gammon on top and pour in that bottle of wine. Fold a sheet of greaseproof/baking paper in half and press on and around the joint.

Now you don't want any of that wine to escape the pot so cover the top of the pan tightly with a double layer of foil (without ripping) - I used kitchen twine to secure it to the pot that much tighter... and then carefully secure with the tight fitting lid being careful not to rip foil.

Place on Med-High heat on hob/stove until steaming. Cook 25min per 500g. You can either keep cooking it on the hob or put it in the oven (preheated 180C/160Cfan) If cooking in the oven you may need an extra 5min/500g added to the cooking time.

When cooking time is up, remove from the heat and set aside (still covered) for at least 20-30min to let the ham soak in the liquor (it is so tempting to check it out but don't - the wait is worth it!)

Once rested (the ham and you too), take ham out of pot and take off the rind *it should pull off quite easily.

Finish with your glaze then put in oven at 200C/180Cfan for 10-20min to warm through but also get that glaze a shining!


Eat hot or cold -- as a snack, as lunch, as a main - you can do it all as it lasts at least a week in the fridge after cooking!

Happy Holidays

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