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Baked Ham Advice

Discussion in 'Cookery' started by nick909, Feb 23, 2011.

  1. nick909

    nick909 Lead commenter

    I cured a ham for Christmas this year, to take to the outlaws. Once cured I boiled it, but given the size (a miscalculation on the part of the farmer who provided the pork shoulder meant I had a piece of pig weighing over a stone!), I cut it in half, through the bone and only glazed and baked half of it and froze the remaining half.
    I want to glaze and bake the remaining half this weekend, as we've family visiting, so have hauled it out of the freezer, but am unsure on a few things.
    Do I need to bring the joint up in temperature before baking? When I've baked hams in the past, I've only allowed them to cool sufficiently to be able to handle them before baking, so they're still hot in the middle.
    I've been thinking about slowly bringing the temperature up by heating in a pan of water. My worries here though are that this might draw more of the cure out of it and reduce the flavour.
    Or could I just bake it straight from room temperature, once the skin's removed and the glaze spread on? I wouldn't be able to heat it through like this, as it would take too long (for a 7.5lb piece of meat!) which would mean that the glaze would burn and the meat would dry out. Does is matter if the meat is heated through? I'm not comfortabe with half-heating a piece of meat that's been frozen for 3 months, even though it's fully cooked (and indeed cured). Am I worrying unnecessarily?
    Any help appreciated. In particular, lapinrose, I'm sure you can help!
     
  2. nick909

    nick909 Lead commenter

    I cured a ham for Christmas this year, to take to the outlaws. Once cured I boiled it, but given the size (a miscalculation on the part of the farmer who provided the pork shoulder meant I had a piece of pig weighing over a stone!), I cut it in half, through the bone and only glazed and baked half of it and froze the remaining half.
    I want to glaze and bake the remaining half this weekend, as we've family visiting, so have hauled it out of the freezer, but am unsure on a few things.
    Do I need to bring the joint up in temperature before baking? When I've baked hams in the past, I've only allowed them to cool sufficiently to be able to handle them before baking, so they're still hot in the middle.
    I've been thinking about slowly bringing the temperature up by heating in a pan of water. My worries here though are that this might draw more of the cure out of it and reduce the flavour.
    Or could I just bake it straight from room temperature, once the skin's removed and the glaze spread on? I wouldn't be able to heat it through like this, as it would take too long (for a 7.5lb piece of meat!) which would mean that the glaze would burn and the meat would dry out. Does is matter if the meat is heated through? I'm not comfortabe with half-heating a piece of meat that's been frozen for 3 months, even though it's fully cooked (and indeed cured). Am I worrying unnecessarily?
    Any help appreciated. In particular, lapinrose, I'm sure you can help!
     
  3. BelleDuJour

    BelleDuJour Star commenter

    Best result is to boil it first. Properly boil it until it is cooked. Then remove skin and dress the surface with whatever glaze you like (there's a fab recipe in Lorraine Pascal's 'Baking Made Easy') and bake it.
    Voila!
     
  4. I'd probably make the time. Like chicken pork bothers me. Logic says it is safe, cured and cooke through. But I would be extremely loathe to serve it only partially warmed through.
    If you set up the glaze and everything as normal then foil it and bung it in the oven on a low/medium heat until it is warmed through then you can take the foil off and turn the heat up.

    I'd do that just to be safe.
     
  5. BelleDuJour

    BelleDuJour Star commenter

    Oh soz...didn't read you'd boiled it.
    Hmmm.....needs to be baked through I reckon. Let me think and I'll get back to you. I'd probably re-boil it to get to temperature then bake off, as this way it won't dry out.
     
  6. nick909

    nick909 Lead commenter

    Thanks Pobble and Belle.
    Yep, these are my thoughts.
    Planning to spike with cloves and glaze with mixture of light muscovado, mustard and rum.
    It will be served cold, but think you're both right in that it needs full reheating. It will only have been reheated once, given that it'll be baked from hot again.

    Any third opinions welcome - my parents are on a rare visit and I want the ham to be as good as it was at Christmas for my wife's family!
     
  7. modelmaker

    modelmaker Occasional commenter

    If the meat is already fully cooked and you get it to room temperature before you bake it, I can't see a paticular problem. I don't need to explain to you I'm sure, that muscle is a good heat insulator of heat which is why it takes longer to cook than say, similar-sized pieces of liver. I suspect you'd only get through part of the ham at your meal, so if you make sure you slice it from the extremities you wouldn't have to worry about the centre being cooler.
    Can you not bake it as you intended but add the glaze 1/2 hour before the end?
     
  8. nick909

    nick909 Lead commenter

    Thanks for the advice, everyone. Have slowly brought it up to temperature in a very tight fitting pan, minimising the amount of water so as not to draw the flavour out. Awaiting skinning, glazing and baking.
    A good idea but would be worried about it drying out. The ham will be eaten cold, anyway. Ta for the reply anyway!
     

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