Gammon with Bourbon Ginger Glaze. What is better than a piece of gammon at an Easter or Christmas get together? Do you remember those tins of ham in the 70's that were the centrepiece of the family buffets? My dad, the cook, always referred to it a 'plastic ham' and avoided it like the plague. He preferred to do his own gammon and for many years would simple boil it. Then honey roasted ham was popular so to keep the gammon moist he would boil it for half the cooking time then roast it for the remainder. It's a method I've always used and keeps the gammon really juicy.
Start with your piece of gammon. An English couple not far from us have their own free range smallholding where they raise sheep, pigs and rabbits along with all sorts of birds including turkeys and geese. Often they cure the legs so I can get a decent piece of gammon. In France you can find a 'jarret demi sel', which is a ham hock. It is often expensive and won't feed a crowd!
Here's my unsmoked piece of gammon. Check with your supplie over whether it needs to be soaked in cold water for a time to remove the excess salt. If in doubt we used to cover in cold water and bring to the boil then discard the water and start again. The basic formula is to allow 30 minutes of cooking time for every 500g of gammon. Start by boiling the ham for half of the cooking time.
In the meantime put Bourbon, pineapple, sugar, ginger marmalade and water into a saucepan and heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves and the mixture boils and thickens. When the gammon has had the half cooking time drain and remove the skin and most of the fat. Try to leave an even, thin layer and score in a diamond pattern. Transfer to an oven dish and pour over the glaze, using a pastry brush to coat evenly.
Bake at 180 for the remaining time and increase the temperature to 200 for the last 20 minutes to get a caramelised crust. Remove from the oven and cool before slicing.
The best bit, as the carver, is that you get to eat all the yummy crusty bits that fall off!
How to you cook your holiday gammon?
- 4 kg unsmoked gammon
- 125 g pineapple chunks in juice
- 100 g water
- 1 tbsp Bourbon
- 2 tbsp ginger marmalade or stem ginger in syrup
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- Calculate the cooking time by allowing 30 minutes for each 500g. Cover the gammon with cold water, bring to the boil and simmer for half the cooking time.
- Combine the rest of the ingredients in a small saucepan and heat, stirring until thickened.
- Drain the water from the gammon and remove the skin and most of the fat before scoring and glazing the gammon with the marmalade mixture.
- Roast in the oven at 180 C for the remaining time but increase the temperature to 200-220 for the last 15-20 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool before refrigerating and slicing.